Monday, March 9, 2015

Sifting Through The Words To Find Your Story

On freedigitalphotos.net by Sura Nualpradid
It was a temporal treasure—the fine white sand in her plastic colander. The work she exerted to dig deep with the blunt edge of the tool and gather up millions, billions of grains of the powdery stuff only to sift it through tiny holes and release it back to the beach again.

What a waste.

But, when the last specks fell through, a treasure appeared. Tiny shells of coral, silver, and white. Perfectly sculpted by the sea. The sand fell away, and the beauty remained.

Is it not the same as when I write a story? I try so hard to keep hold of the millions of words I've so diligently dug up from deep within my soul. I go through and “edit”, plucking out the bits of debris—the obvious rubbish of clunky words and awkward sentences. But often I stop sifting—editing—and call it “done” way too early to showcase the gems of the story. Sometimes, I even leave those gems hidden because I rush to a self-imposed deadline and don't realize there is something deeper in the story that needs to be revealed.
on freedigitalphotos.net by Keerati

Right now, I am in the sifting process of my latest WIP. With the help of an amazing editor, I have discovered not only the obvious things that need changing, but this sifting has revealed treasures in the story I did not even know were there—character qualities, subplots, motives, twists—and instead of rushing through to get on with it and empty my “colander” for the next story, I continue to sift, brush off those treasures, and make my story shine like never before.
on freedigitalphotos.net by Mister GC

Have you ever had an a-ha moment as you edit, revealing a piece of the story you didn't realize was there?

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Angie Dicken is a full-time mom and lives in the Midwest with her Texas Aggie sweetheart. An ACFW member since 2010, she has written five Historical Romance novels, has a Historical underway, and is represented by Tamela Hancock Murray of The Steve Laube Agency. Angie also spends her time designing one-sheets, selling Jamberry, and drinking good coffee with great friends. Check out her author page at www.facebook.com/dicken.angie and her personal blog at angiedicken.blogspot.com 


2 comments:

Krista Phillips said...

oh yes!!!

Actually, I had a moment today! There was a part at the end of my book that was just unsettling...something was missing and while it wasn't in editing I found it, my mom and I were talking on the phone about it and the solution just floated to the top, so glaring with a bit of a DUH moment! A GREAT moment when that happens!!!

Angie said...

I love it when that happens, Krista!! Almost like having to get knocked in the forehead when walking in the dark to know where you are going...hee hee....