Friday, October 23, 2009

Upped a level in editing

I made a discovery about all those pages of endless dialog that appear in my first drafts and fail to progress the plot. From a scene I was working on last night:

"

Do the wings grow in later?" My Dad asked. They were disproportionately small
compared to the rest of the body. "I can't imagine it could fly with those."
"Maybe it's like a bumblebee," said my mom. "Scientists used to say they
couldn't fly. It's too heavy for its short little wings."
"I would imagine it's magic," said Uncle Dave.
"So can it fly now, with those wings?" asked my Dad. "And more importantly, can we expect its mother to pop out of the woods to protect it from us?"

Became:

"Do the wings grow in later?" My Dad asked. They looked insignificant, like a
bumblebee's. "Surely it can't fly with those."
"I would imagine it's magic," said Uncle Dave.
"Can we expect its mother to pop out of the woods to protect it from us?" asked my Dad.

Apparently my characters don't actually have to say everything. Some of that endless dialog can be metaphors.

2 comments:

DariceMoore said...

I love that process, once I'm ready for it -- it feels like clearing out the underbrush.

Robyn said...

Yes, there's that. Forcing the editing before I've gestated the first draft is pointless. Fortunately (?) I have tons of things that need editing.

I'm still thinking about your bees, by the way. Awesome.