Thursday, December 2, 2010

Too Much Fabric

I've been working on the first draft of a new wip for a while now. A long while. Like, at one point I wondered if the book had an ending and a friend on twitter deemed it:

Yeah, that is how long it is. In word count, you ask? I stopped counting after I hit 100k. It's a YA Contemporary. I KNOW that it is way too long. But I couldn't help it. There was some sort of bizarro word vomit situation going and, well, ta-da! I ended up here.

However, in my defense, I'm one of those people who think that it is way easier to cut than add. Plus, I sort of feel better about myself when I can slim down an ms, instead having to figure out the best places to let it out.

Example: Say you buy an amazing dress online. You never got to try it on and they don't have any clear sizing information, so you just wing it. Plus, they have in bright red bold flashing letters that there is a strict no returns policy. But this dress is so amazing you HAVE to have it. You go to order it, there's 2 sizes left. The first is one size too small. The second is one size too big. Which do you buy?

If you ask me, I'd take the one too big. Why? Because it is way easier to take something in, remove the parts that you don't need, than to get the smaller size and hope that it fits, thinking that you'll worry about adding more later. Plus, you know, when I have to get something taken in, well, it's quite a boost to the ego. ;)

That's just how my brain works. That and I am apparently VERY long winded and needed more than 100k words to tell you about carnival rides.

So do you go with too much, too too much, or whatever you think is just right?


Amanda said...

Since I never think things through, I'd probably buy the smaller dress! ;)

I'm not a fan of cutting. I think it's easier to add on than subtract. But everyone has a different style and process. Good luck with snipping away the excess fabric of your MS. I know it's going to be great! :)

Stephanie McGee said...

I tend to wing it as far as word count. I usually have an end goal in mind, but I'll expand that if I feel it necessary. With the book currently being beta'd I'm guessing I'll have to add words, at least some. It's around 80K and it's contemporary/urban fantasy so it might be a tad on the short side for the genre.

Good luck finishing the manuscript!

Angie said...

Nice analogy. I usually just tell the story for however many words it takes and go from there. I also like the feeling of being able to cut.

Patti said...

Great analogy, plus you can wear it quicker than trying to lose weight to fit into it.

Shannon O'Donnell said...

Love the analogy! I prefer it too big. It's easier to go back and cut chunks out than to add to something too small. :-)

ali said...

This is such a great analogy Windy. I tend to write too little the first time around. But while I'm totally with you on the dress scenario, in writing I can totally handle adding.

Usually for me, the first time around I'm just telling you about the scene. So when I go back, it's pretty easy to see that I need to add some emotion here, that I need to do some SHOWING.

But hey. That's what makes the world go around, right? Vive la difference!