Bible Gateway

Wednesday, June 07, 2006

Discussion with Margaret Daley

Margaret Daley has graciously allowed me to interview her on my website and now she is with us today to discuss the craft of writing.

Margaret, you and I have been recently been discussing slashing out unneeded material from one's prose. Can you give us more insight on how to know what to keep and what to trash?

1 comment:

Margaret Daley said...

Deb, this is a great question. We have all at one time or another had to add or cut our stories. When you are looking at cutting a story, you need to look at each scene and ask yourself why the scene is in the book. If you can give at least three good reasons it is there, then keep it. The reasons can be something to do with introducing and developing a character or subplot. Another reason may be involved in showing the conflict (internal or external), the hero and/or heroine's goals or motivations. Also in an inspirational romance we want to show the faith journey of our hero and heroine which could be one of the reasons for a scene. One reason isn't enough. You may find you will want to combine scenes where you don't have enough reasons for it. Just because a scene is cute and funny isn't enough. The scene must progress the story--move the plot along. Pacing is important in a story and if you pad your story with scenes that don't have good reasons to be there, they will slow your pacing way down. Then readers (or editors) will put your book down. Good luck with slashing your story. Sometimes you have to be merciless which can be hard when we are looking at our own writing.

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