Monday, April 13, 2015

Killing Your Darlings

After painstakingly analyzing every word to create the perfect scene, the last thing an author wants to do is delete even one letter. However, no matter how attached we are to our scenes if they do not move the story forward, they need to be removed.

It is not easy for an author to get rid of a scene she likes. She may prefer to cut of an arm instead. But, once she rereads her work, she will see how much better it is without the padding.

If the scene means that much to the author, she can consider putting it aside to use in another work or expand the scene into a short story.


  1. I hate killing my darlings, but my books usually end up better as a result. And there is almost always a way to recycle that favorite scene, even if it is just in a blog post of deleted scenes.

  2. I keep everything I cut -- even if I can't find it later. LOL But it makes the cutting/editing/revising easier, knowing that the words aren't gone forever. And I remind myself that it was worthwhile writing the words, even if they don't get to be part of the final product. They helped me figure out the story or the characters. So they definitely did their part!