Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Editing For Length

Cut cut cut.

One of the best things we can do for our stories is to present them in their simplest form. There is no need to hoard words and details. Know when to say when.

I heard an essay the other day I thought was pretty great. I was totally engaged--laughing and feeling the narrative. Then it went on too long. And at the end there was a weak moral, stapled awkwardly onto an ending that could've been cut paragraphs before. I had a disappointed aftertaste. (Maybe it was my own essay...?)

So here's a good guideline for bloggers: if you can't write it in 500-1000 words, you might want to break it up into something you post over several days. Scrolling down is tedious. Online reading is tight and swift and internet readers are always eager for something to look forward to the next day.

I think that's all I want to say.

This reminds me of my brilliantly talented friend Paul's video called Proper Noun from his band Paul Jacobsen and the Madison Arm. The girl keeps talking and talking and talking. And talking:

Want to discuss this tip with me? Ok, I'll be on facebook.