Tuesday, July 6, 2010

writing group and weather

I am still slogging through my manuscript edits during my writing group sessions.  Today was another.  It had been suggested that I remove a parental rescue from a scene at school and I did.  I didn't like doing it, because I liked how the original scene filled out the mother and the nurse characters, but since this is a book about a kid, for kids, maybe I shouldn't have something like a parental rescue scene at that particular point.  Maybe the adult characters don't need that much fleshing out.  Maybe I better just let things be and try to keep him out of a particular moment of trouble a different way. I think I managed to, but not as I would have hoped.

I miss the nuances of that scene.  I think my least favorite thing about editing is the cuts.  I worked a lot on that scene over years.  I liked it, but once again, just because I liked it doesn't mean that it was good for the book.  I think the scene I have now, shortened, is more to the point of the scene's purpose.  And that's a good thing.

In the meantime, I know the whole East Coast is having a heat wave right now, but I'll tell, it is tough to be outside in my corner of Virginia these days.  My poor little gardens are feeling it, and so is the lawn, or the scorched prickly earth that used to be the lawn. 

Boys are not here for closing in on a week now.  This makes me a bit crabby.  Not the best of moods to be editing out scenes I like and dealing with this infernal heat. I'd rather be outside gardening, but it's too dang hot.  Guess I'll have to take out my frustrations by trimming bushes later. 


  1. so, i'm curious what happens when a group feels strongly about your book in one way (in this case, deleting the scene) and you feel the other way (that it should be there.) what do you do? do you go with the group rec or do you keep to your instinct?

  2. i struggle with criticism, but i respect my group's suggestions. i also have a couple of other longtime trusted other readers who've made similar suggestions. so when i have that kind of a collective response, there must be something to it.

    but i also tend to trust my gut instincts more than anything. so i may decide that this is important to the book, but maybe it happens in a different way elsewhere.

    this is my first full length work of fiction, so it's still quite a learning process for me. if i can get through this particular draft, i think my next step is sending it out. i've been working on this book a very long time.

    if it comes back from agents/publishers still suggesting changes i've resisted, then so be it, i make that change.


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