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Thursday, September 18, 2008

Taking a beating...

One of my least favorite things to do is line edits. It's excruciatingly painful. Each phrase needs to be reviewed, parsed, snipped...

I can spend hours editing a page. In fact, that's what I'm stumbling in from. I've spent the morning nitpicking, rewriting, and scrutinizing two pages of DoJ.

Two pages! 1000 words at most!

Let's look at the statistics. In two pages I have:
- Three major characters talking
- Four secondary "prop" characters who exist but don't say much of anything
- Three sources of conflict
- Two dead bodies
- Two or three points where there is a set up for future conflict or foreshadowing

Looking at it that way, I ought to be happy I packed so much into that little. Usually it takes more than 300 words to kill people. The tech in my series is limited, which is odd for sci-fi, and most of the fights are hand-to-hand combat rather than shoot outs.

Still, I've literally spent three hours on trying to make this chapter right, and I'm still not happy with it. The POV character is limited in what he can do, and that limits what I can say. But I still feel like I could pack more into the chapter.

And, let's face it, I'm worried about word count. This is what I'm currently labeling "Chapter Six" and the word count is under 10,000. Now, granted, I'm segmenting this by scenes rather than something like a ten page chapter. And each scene is about five or six pages (if you use 250 words per page as the count), but it still seems short.

It is short!

Word count is just evil! My first novel was far to long. This one, well, I'm worried that when I've cut and snipped and been as concise as possible, that that the word count will be too little. I have quite a few fight scenes and plotting to go, but... still... editing makes me neurotic.

How are you?


  1. Bo, don't even get me started on the evils of editing.


    *rips hair*

    (good luck though--fight the good fight!)

  2. *insert war cry here*

    *charges in, red pens blazing*

    *vanishes under a mob of adverbs*


  3. *is odd*

    I like editing :)

    Sympathies though - I know how frustrating it can be :S

  4. My chapters tend to be very short. I run into problems when I cut so much they drop to a few pages, so then I need to combine them with another.

    Sometimes editing does seem endless.
    Oh, wait, it is endless.