Fiction · Plan · Write

Cutting the fluff


You love to write, and you are often quite fond of certain portions of your writing. It’s nice to create something you can be proud of, and you love being able to share these works with others.

However, it can sometimes be these portions that are the most difficult to cut from your work, even when it’s essential that you do so. You’ll tell yourself that they can stay, and try to find ways they add value to the overall story. If you are able to tweak them a bit to keep them relevant, you may be able to keep them. If not, they need to go, even if they are polished and shiny.

Why is it so important to cut fluff like this?

Well, your readers want a well-written story that they can follow. This means staying on task and offering information that is directly relevant to the plot and the character’s development. It’s natural that you will know more about the people and worlds you’ve created than the reader does, and it’s important that you understand how much information to give away in your work. Some things simply won’t be needed, and should be removed from the story.

If you give your audience too much information, you run the risk of boring them or confusing them with unnecessary information. It will take them away from the points you are trying to make, and if it does this to an extent that frustrates them, they may put the book down and start reading something new.

You want to keep your writing engaging and your readers at the edge of their seats. Long descriptions and backstories that aren’t directly relevant can slow down the action and really hinder the flow of your story overall. Even if you have a great plot, the reader may not be able to see it due to these distractions.

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