Monday, January 23, 2012 at 5:00 AM | By: Taffy
While in the garden I had to laugh a little at myself. I remember a couple of years ago we dumped our moldy, gross pumpkins in the garden as well as squash we didn't get around to eating. I was thinking about how good those little gourds would be for the soil, not the consequences of hundreds of seeds scattered around as well.
When the ground warmed up, little green sprouts came up EVERYWHERE! I was giddy with the relief of not planting much that spring. Clusters of green appeared all over and I couldn't bear to thin them.
My weakness taught me a lesson: I need the courage to thin the good stuff to produce the best.
This applies to editing, don't you think? We need the courage to thin our words to show readers the best. Too much wordage distracts us from the plot, distances us from the characters and draws us out of the story.
Too many adverbs or tags or adjectives or purple prose or...you understand, distracts from a good story.
Be brave, dear gardeners of words. Those beautiful words you love so much will suffocate your work. You must edit. For your story, you must thin out the good stuff to produce the best.
Do you have trouble with too many words? How's your word count?