Tuesday, July 20, 2010
Cutting your scenes
When I woke up yesterday, I planned this mental to-do list in my head. I wanted to iron clothes before the house got too hot. I wanted to research dental insurance and I wanted to read a new book.
Nothing earth shattering.
If I'd written about my day, the reader wouldn't see much purpose for that scene and might be temped to yawn through it. (Aren't you?) I mean, come on, it wasn't like I was going to drive downtown and pound on all the doors at the mall and beg for a job. Or it wasn't like I was going to buy a plane ticket and go see my father one more time before he dies.
No--my scene yesterday would be the kind you cut out of a book.
When I reread some of my manuscript this week, I found a few of those non-purpose scenes. The MC had no goals--had nothing to achieve of any worth in them.
I had a choice--find purpose or cut them. Sad to say a few found themselves looking up from the wastebasket.
Have you ever found yourself writing scenes as fillers? As a way to add word count or to tell about some small news item in the MC's life?
I'll loan you my shears.
Did your delete key get a workout this week?