|This ad is so ridiculously funny on so many levels that I couldn't resist. Which is more superior to men? Women? Or the cigarettes? Anyway, back to the post.|
By the time I got the deal with Sourcebooks, the manuscript was at 78K, but they wanted 10K more. "No problem," I thought. I already had a bunch of ideas.
But then I went through the book and immediately saw some of my amateur attempts to plump up the book: Clunky descriptions, redundant dialogue tags, you name it. During the latest overhaul, I had to cut almost as many words than I added.
Thankfully, I noticed a major thing that was missing in the book: Emotion. It seemed that whenever I described how a character felt about a situation, it was all tell and no show. Besides the fact that this was only my 3rd manuscript and I was still honing my craft, I believe there are other reasons for this flaw in the story...but that will be another post. :)
I wish I could post a magical formula of how to effectively layer a manuscript, but I don't feel anywhere near being an expert on it yet. My advice is sheer trial and error, learning what works and what doesn't. Also GET A CRITIQUE GROUP! Mine has been invaluable with this experience.
On another note: Fellow Casablanca author, Shana Galen kinda laughed at me a bit when she heard of my plight. Apparently she has the opposite problem.
Which makes me wonder: How many of you are slim with your word counts and how many always seem to need to cut?