Fast Draft Day 9 — Murder, most foul

9:03 — Home 30 minutes

Very tired the last couple days.  Tomorrow, I will rise and type and break and type and lunch and type and so on.  I need to feel like I’m still doing this.  I don’t want to taper off.

It’s even possible that my poor sleep has been because I haven’t been typing more.  That’s frightening.

Tonight I had to do the thing every writer dreads.  I’d slipped several hundred words of really lovely dialog out — it sparkled, it danced, it toyed with the reader’s expectations while delivering more than was promised.  It was subtle and witty and had flair and flare both.  And it took the scene in entirely the wrong direction.  It would, in fact, have led to sensible behavior that just doesn’t work in an adventure or romance based story.  Since mine is both, this was a problem.  I ranted to Shannon, since doing that frequently produces what I will call wisdom from my mouth.

“The problem is that, from the beginning of that block of text, the scene goes awry.  It’s great dialog, though.  I hate to lose it.  But it’s in the way, and the only way to get the scene back to where it just has to go is to start both characters in the scene’s starting position, and if I’m just going to recurse the scene I should cut the words and –”  I clapped hands over mouth.


“No.  Noo no no no no.”  My words were probably muffled through my clasping hands, but the meaning carried on my wild rolling eyes.

“You’re not going to tell me, are you?  You’re just going to stand there hiding your chin and doing the potty dance, scaring the cats ….”

“I have to murder my darlings.”

“Maybe you can save them for later.”

“No, they have to go.  They were so young and vital….”

“Well, do it quickly, and it won’t be so bad.”

“If you had to kill me, would you mind less if you did it quickly, or would you still feel badly afterward?”

“Depends on why I’m killing you.”

“Let’s say it was the cat, instead.”  Then I went and murdered my darlings.  They didn’t look accusingly, just held expressions of love and respect for me, accepting the wisdom of my choice on their behalf.  

I can still see their faces when I close my eyes, all those innocent words….

Crossposted from Epinephrine & Sophistry