Tuesday, October 27, 2020

Tuesday's Writer's Tip - Revision - Cutting versus Compression #BWLAuthor #MFRWAuthor #Cutting #Compression #Revision

 Revision is important when a book is finished. Looking at scenes or paragraphs to determine their length and to see if they fit the purpose they were intended to do can be easy or hard. As I mentioned once, I read a story for a contest and the first chapter was a description of a trip along the coast line of a state. The entire chapter while descriptive really belonged in a travelogue rather than a novel since in reality the entire chapter had nothing to do with the characters. There are two ways to do the kind of revision needed for those over long scenes or paragraphs.

The first is cutting. This means going in and removing all the unnecessary words and phrases. By doing this you will shorted the bit you want to shorted. This will also make the information more concrete. I've done this frequently. Amazing how cutting out a word or two can make the passage stronger.

The second is compression - when doing this what you essentially need to do is to re-write the passage. Look at this and see what the point of the scene or paragraph is and then attack and make it clearer bu word choice. As a draft writer, I use this method frequently. When rewriting a section, thought is needed to pick out the important parts and to make then clearer. Sometimes this method seems to make the passage longer but it doesn't. You make need to put the scene into a dialogue between two people or by internal thought. While there may be more sentences, the information is clearer and more concise. You might even see there are really fewer words if you do a word count.

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