Thursday, August 27, 2009

nip 'n tuck...

Actually, anyone got a weed-whacker?

There's a call for submissions, short-shorts, 500 words tops. "Cool," said I. Not really, please believe me. But I liked the idea, nonetheless.

I wrote, sumitted. Rejection followed. Not cool.

Still, the rejection said the writing and style were fine, they just didn't like the story.

New sheet of paper, start again. I wrote. And wrote. And wrote some more. By the time I colored in the final period, I had twice the number of words needed/wanted/acceptable.

All that remained to do was cut the story in half, while still keeping the story. In the past I've taken 1,700 words out of a story to get to around 3,000. In another case, 1,000 words to hit a 2,500 word count.

So, 500 should be easy, no? I'm trying to avoid ending up with: "It was a great trip till the bus took a left turn rather than right. It fell off a cliff. Everybody died. The End."

I'll let you know how it goes.


  1. LOL! It will be very hard to cull 500 words out of 1,000. If you submitted the story in your last paragraph to six sentences, you'd have one more sentence to work with... :)
    I feel your pain. Good luck!

  2. Ooh, cutting half is going to be hard. Forget the weed whacker. You need a chain saw. Good luck.

  3. I've got the story to 700 (702, but who's quibbling?) I'm afraid that may be the best I can do. A few more words here and there, my writing course instructor told me you can always trim, but I don't think there are another 200 to trim.
    Ah well, I'll have to try find another venue for it.
    And go back and write a 500-word one.

  4. One chain saw, words for the trimming of - I've slimmed the story down but have to (I believe) concede defeat at a fraction over 700 words.
    But the trimming, if that's the words that applies, was a valuable exercise and the story is sharper for it.