After taking the day off yesterday, more or less, I’m ready to bring out that red pen of death and make my pages bleed. Call me crazy if you want, but I rather enjoy the editing stage of writing. It has nothing on that first and most wonderful 1st draft where I watch worlds and lives bloom before my eyes. Yet its enjoyable nonetheless.
Almost like popping a zit. Slightly painful, a little messy but satisfying in its own way. I know a lot of writers dread this stage. And I can understand their point of view. We’ve spent an untold amount of time slaving over our words, crafting the perfect story and falling in love with every page. Editing could mean destroying a character we can’t live without, or deleting a scene we’ve spent hours working on. It’s painful and a little messy.
For me, editing brings with it the chance to make it better, stronger, smoother. Yes, I slaved over that love scene, it makes the heart weep with its tender show of devotion, it allows the reader to see into the soul of the ‘bad guy’ and plants a seed of doubt that she’s as bad as the main character portrays her to be. Yet, it might not end up in the final cut. And that’s okay, the story might work better without it.
I’ll mourn the loss of a favored character or scene, I’ll cry and indulge in ice cream. Then I’ll pick up the red pen again and smooth all the edges.