Tuesday, September 10, 2019

Over-Working Your Stories

This is a cautionary tale.

We all want to make sure our story is great when it is sent out to those editors and agents. We want to make sure that story is right on the money for our readers. But sometimes, over-working it only ruins it.

This is a problem a lot of authors have around the world so if you feel you are in this group, don't panic! You aren't alone. Still, this is an issue that has to be fixed!

I started thinking about this when I was talking about his creative writing class in college. His professor is one of those authors who fine tunes everything. She will spend hours working on a single passage, massaging it, changing single words over and over again to conjure just the "right image." In the last 8 years, she has written three novels (I should note, the size of a Harlequin Historical).

So, was it worth it? Probably not. I read a couple of excerpts and while it is clear that the writing has been worked really hard, the writing itself becomes difficult to read and distracts from getting the plot across to the reader. In a lot of ways, the writing starts sounding like something I describe as NPR Literary Fiction. If you have ever heard authors such as this on NPR talking about their books, they discuss the writing as so elevated above the common man. They talk about the imagery of a blue door to their house as if it is symbolic of the deep philosophy of ancient warlords in a long forgotten civilization.

Will your readers get this? NO!

I am not saying to not use metaphors and symbolism. I am not saying to not work and edit your stories. I am saying, that much fine tuning becomes over-kill

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