Some More Writing Blog by MLR

Happy Holidays, tout le monde.

I know it's been a while, but I've actually been giving the final pass to Part One. It seems there's a few stages, here: sentence-by-sentence, word-by-word editing (is the language good), then chapter-by-chapter editing (is each chapter cohesive, are there still plot holes, etc.), then global editing (does the whole story flow). So in doing that I haven't found much to comment on in a blog. Just been tweaking some language and fixing logical inconsistencies. Luckily each Part is disjointed enough I can treat them each as one novel, at least for the time being (I'm sure I'll go back and link them all together more once the whole thing is done).

But here's something: one of the things I find myself doing a lot of is removing all sorts of redundant things. And I don't mean obvious things, like duplicate sentences or whatever. It's more like... I don't know, unnecessary clarifications? I'm going to go find an example.

Okay, here's one I just found in my draft: "People, beast-kin, out in the woods, late in the evening, along a hidden trail, plumbing the depths of Deleery's hunting instincts just by their scent. There was no need to ask questions."

It's that second sentence that's problematic. It used to be worse, where I had something like "They'd found the enemy camp", or whatever. An elaboration on something that's already strongly hinted at by the context. I can't help but feel like when I put those in, I'm talking down to the audience, basically saying "I don't trust you're paying close enough attention to understand what this means, so I'll spell it out for you now." And yet I keep finding those in there, all over the place. I must have formed the habit at some point, maybe picked it up from something I've read.

I guess, depending on the audience you're shooting for, those things can be okay. Does this bother anyone else?

Some More Writing Blog


24 December 2015 at 07:04:58 MST

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    I have a bad tendency to overuse the odd word or two. Atop was and still is a notorious word.

    As long as the word or phrases used are good for the flow of reading and don't re-appear too often; it's all good.


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      Overused words, or words used too close together, yeah. I think those are some things every writer is constantly battling. Sometimes I just break out the thesaurus/dictionary combo to fix things like that.