Friday, April 10, 2015

I is for Importance

Yes, a blog on what is important. This should be an important topic. That and it was hard to come up with an I topic for the A to Z Blog Challenge. Check out the link to see what other bloggers decided to post for today.

By importance I mean more than just it's important to edit. What I really mean and will write about briefly is in determining what information and actions are important to the story. This can be a challenge for some writers and why it's something one must focus on in particular during rewrites and edits because the first draft is no place to worry bout such a detail.

Is the scene important? Is that character important?

There should be varying levels of yes or no, however. It's not completely straightforward and just because something doesn't have a huge, pressing, plot changing level of importance, that doesn't mean it needs to be cut.

It can be hard to tell if something is important because having written the whole story, you might think of course it is important. Everything can seem important. This is why it's often recommended to take a break between drafts in order to gain some judgment distance. Getting a little distance will make it easier to both see some of the excess but also to not hate it if the rush of the draft ended with tiring of the story.

Overall, finding the important bits of story, fixing the minor errors and such, that is all part of editing. Important editing...

How do you determine what is important in your story?