March 14, 2011

What Editing and the Man in the Iron Mask Have in Common

Yes, I'm talking about the 1998 film b/c I haven't read the book (I know, I'm such a pleb). No, it's not Leonardo DiCaprio.

"Wear it until you love it."
~Said by Louis to his brother Phillipe. He followed that up with 'And die in it.' But I think that might be taking the metaphor too far. AND I DON'T ENCOURAGE EDITING UNTIL YOU DIE OF IT, JUST SAYING.

When I began editing, it drove me nuts. The overwriting! The horrid dialogue! The minutiae! Of course, six months and a far better manuscript later, I began to realize I really liked this editing thing. Good thing because it took another four months of editing to reach where I'm at now. I wielded my mental red pen (b/c I edit on the computer and marking up the screen with red ink is only fun in theory) like an ice sculptor's chainsaw and hacked away the large, unusable bits. Then I picked up the chisel and worked on the finer details. Editing, I discovered, is fun!

"I wear the mask. It does not wear me."
~Said by Phillippe when he's rescued, yay!

Editing is something you can't avoid. Kind of like writing stories. Stuff you just have to do if you want to be an author. Unless you're Snooki. And yeah, sometimes it begins to feel like editing has transformed into this suffocating mask that hides you away from things like sunlight and your family and the shower.

Seriously though, editing is one of your greatest tools as a writer, but when you want to stop and put it down? Go ahead and put it down. Trust me, it's detachable (unlike Phillippe's mask).

Hope you guys had a great weekend. ♥ Stay safe!

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