Saturday, March 31, 2012

Word Reduction Exercise

Tuesday evening at Ben Franklin Place in Centrepointe was a packed house for the Awesome Authors contest award ceremony. Every seat in the auditorium was filled with people, and others standing and kids sitting on the floor up front. It is great to see all the interest in writing by these kids, aged nine to seventeen, not to mention the talent. All of their stories and poetry will be in an Ottawa Public Library publication entitled Potpourri, which will be on sale through the library. Here's a photo with some of the winners in the English short story contest.

I continue to edit my adult mystery, now entitled Cold Mourning. I've edited out 1000 words so far and have a few thousand more to go. Actually, this is a great, although time-consuming, exercise. I have to decide if sections or parts of sentences can be removed or reworded in fewer words. I signed the contract and sent it back to Dundurn earlier this week - I've been asked to start thinking about cover ideas!

It's an odd thing in this writing business. You spend about a year on a manuscript and send it off to the publisher. Then, you begin a new project and a year or so later, the previous manuscript comes back for editing and tweaking. By this time, you've moved on, sort of like to a new boyfriend, and have to reacquaint yourself with the story and characters. I remember hearing an author say that they hadn't reviewed their novel before appearing on a radio show and they'd forgotten the plot and characters because so much time had passed since they wrote it. A brain can hold onto only so much detail . . . I'm trying to remember if I ate breakfast this morning.

So back to manuscript with my big red pen, or in the computer age, delete button. Luckily, it's still cold enough outside that I won't be tempted to play hooky. Easter and spring are carrots for when I get this work done. This year's tulips will soon be looking like this:

 . . . And I'll have time to hang out in a shoe:-)

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