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Cut 10% of your first draft in editing This tip is from Stephen King's memoir "On Writing." He got the tip as a comment in one of his rejection letters. The idea is that the language of your first draft is going to be flowery and full of superfluous words. Cutting 10% of those words will tighten your prose. King includes an example of how he edited the ...


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Kill your darlings The idea is that the mind is able to think "ingenious" about any old idea, and that the truth of that assessment can only be tested by trying the idea in reality. Unfortunately sometimes an idea will not work, but the "ingenious tag" persists and we try anything we can to keep our idea in play, even bend reality! This is when you need ...


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In looking at your excerpts, and granting for translation, I think the problem is that you start well and then add too much. You don't have to give all the details at once. If this is a person we never see again, secondary details don't matter; if your protagonist is interacting with the character, then there's time later in the scene to add more detail. ...


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In addition to Mike C. Ford's excellent suggestions, there is a secret technique, misunderstood but effective, known to all professional writers but divulged to few outsiders… Don't show, tell. "The city was founded by people from all over the world. Generations had gone by, but not so many that its people all looked the same." Job done!


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There are a number of solutions that I have for this, as I suffered from the same problem: Only describe what you need to Imagine trying to describe James Bond to someone. You could say that he is handsome, looks good in a suit, and has an athletic build. This could be enough to get a good image in the reader's head, and could describe any of the actors ...



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