Sue Burke (mount_oregano) wrote,
Sue Burke

Go Ahead — Rewrite This Story

Rewriting isn't evil, although it can feel that way. No one gets it right the first time.

When you revise, watch out for: Starting in the wrong place. Ending in the wrong place. Scenes that should be moved around. Unnecessary characters or scenes. Missing scenes. Missing motives. Adverbs, adjectives, and weak verbs. Weak conflicts. Slow pacing. Few sensory details. Inconsistent or wrong point of view. Wooden dialogue. Wooden characters. Clichés. Unvarying sentences. The wrong title. No final meaning.

In other words, everything is up for grabs, and repeated rewriting will make you an evil genius. If you need an idea, here's a few:

• This is a story about a space cruiser company president who goes to court to fight charges that his "employee services" program providing for their personal needs has devolved into virtual slavery.

• This is a rather literary alternate history novelette set in 1493 shortly after it becomes clear to the royal court of Spain that Admiral Christopher Columbus and his ships will never return.

• This is a humorous horror story about a house sold with the advice that its ghost is placated by attractive artwork, but the new owner's taste turns out to be awful.

— Sue Burke

Tags: writing

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