Negotiating with the Muse

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image via fourwindsapps.com

One of the problems writers have, once they feel they have something to write about, is how to shape a story. The muse perched on one's shoulder will often flood the writer with insights, and the writer often feels the urge to cram all of those insights into one piece of writing. The writer's role, then, is how to pare down that overly generous flood to a concise storyline. A couple of thoughts:

  • The reader only needs to know 1/5 of what the writers knows about what's going on. This allows the reader's imagination to work with the storyline and makes for concise prose. 
  • A technique, should your story seem  a flood of information, side trips, and peripheral character data: cut your piece by 30-40%. Just go though it quickly and begin marking out what seem the less relevant things. This allows your subconscious mind to negotiate with the muse's insights in ways that lead to coherent stories.
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