Tuesday, April 29, 2008

We grind, we grind, we grind so sharp

It occurred to me the other day that editing is like sharpening a dull knife: you have to grind away the useless metal to reform that bright sharp edge. The tool is improved by the taking away of material.

And don't we want to slice up July tomatoes nice and thin with our stories? Uh, wait a second.

A knife is meant to be sharp; a story is meant to be taut and clean and meaningful, even the quiet meandering ones. Maybe it's just me, but I hardly ever add text when I'm editing. Mostly I remove fluff; grinding the story down to that sharp edge.

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