Cut 1,000’s of words

Here are some of the tips for cutting 1,000’s of words from a manuscript that I learned at the conference (I definitely need this for Shenandoah’s Daughter, and I’m sure I’ll need it to a lesser extent for Comanche Lost):
  1. Does your story start in the right place? (Most prologs aren’t necessary. If you’re relying on a crisis point from the past to grab your reader, your first chapter isn’t strong enough. YIf your first chapter is more like backstory, cutting it could help you create more/stronger reader questions and mor suspense. Sprinkling it in later could make it have more impact. I’m seriously thinking about this one.)
  2. Include only the backstory and research that your reader needs to know. Trickle it in. (Save the fun factoids for a blog.)
  3. Can two of your minor characters b combined into one?
  4. Do you need to drop a subplot? Have you over complicated your story?
  5. Does each scene propel the story forward? (If it doesn’t it needs to go. You can save it for another book, or as a reader gift, etc.)
  6. On rare occasions, it’s better to tell than show. For instance: having a sentence tell about the passage of time.
These tips are from Erica Vetsch, a mutli-published author of Regency fiction.

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