On Monday, I metaphor-ed that the darlings I must murder are like a diseased appendix. And I have spent this week garbing up for surgery – scrubbing up, betadine, gloves – and preparing for the first incision.
Problem is, my novel really does need more added than taken away. Ninety-nine percent of what I’m jotting down is either:
- Or How did you end it like this?
So there’s a lot to add. Which won’t help it’s already triple digit word count. But that doesn’t mean I don’t have some things to eliminate. And sometimes these are things that I really enjoy both reading and writing.
Here’s an example.
Task and Kyr, my MC and a supporting character, have a lovely banter back and forth during certain scenes. They look at the world, they comment, and they make it a game to see who is better at the snappy come backs. Who can annoy the knight the most? Let’s find out. It’s fun to read. They entertain me. I would think they’d entertain you.
But these scenes serve no purpose to the plot. Or to the story. It is just me flexing my authorial dialogue muscle. So out comes the red-inked scalpel which excises all of these words and moves them to the document labeled, “Nope.”
As for characters, my casts seem to be on the small side. Right now, I have:
Task – The protagonist (POV Character)
Geir – The Foil (POV Character)
Ziove – The love interest
Ikala and Kyr – Secondary but major characters
Haldor and the other (3) Mini Bosses – The antagonists
Sayine, Jules, Cidon, Adom and Kither – Minor secondary characters
King Kvets I – Very minor character
And that’s really about it. There might be a chance, when I get to later chapters, to meld a few things together. Some minor characters that I haven’t listed because they were maybe in one chapter might end up being axed. I can’t think of any off the top of my head, which might be a sign that they should be gone for being unmemorable.
I’ll keep you updated with my handy little section below to let you know if I murdered any characters by excising them from the novel. Every surgery gets a little bloody. Mine will be no different.
So, we’re nearly halfway through the month. Readers, how many darlings have you murdered so far? What are the words you’re writing in the margins the most?
Chapter: 12/24 (50%)
Pen refills: 1
Scenes sliced: 3
Darlings killed: 3
Current Concern: Pacing. The first plot twist is in chapter 14 of 24 and over halfway through the novel.