13 June 2011

Chapter 6

Ever since attending the Midwest Writers Workshop a few weeks ago, I've been hard at work, revising the work-in-progress, paying attention to issues that were raised there.

Things were clicking right along until chapter 6. Chapter 6 just wasn't working. Something was off about it.

Enter my writers' group yesterday. First comment out of the box: great tone, voice, etc that fits with the rest, but if you cut out this chapter from the book, what would you lose?

*Blink. Blink*

As soon as he said it, I knew that was the answer. Chapter 6 is getting cut. One smidgeon of the scene is important, but the rest is mostly just talking. Boring talking.

This is a good reminder of why I'm part of a writers' group. I was so close to my own story, that I couldn't see the very obvious solution. Take out what's not working. I was focused on on rewriting and had gotten so myopic about this chapter, I couldn't see the advantage of deleting it.

There are about three pages that I need to keep, tacking them on to the end of chapter 5 or the start of what once was chapter 7 and is now chapter 6. I think it's a great exercise and will make the book tighter in the end.

Delete key, get ready for a work out.

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