The Millions : 47 Endings Can’t Ruin A Great Novel: Hemingway’s A Farewell to Arms

You'll have to be a BIG! Hemingway fan to want to read this one. Still, it might help you writers out there to feel more at home with your own false starts and, um, bleepy titles.

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Whenever I work on a piece of writing more than a few days, I create a “dump file” where I can store my many false starts, failed scenes, and tin-eared snatches of dialogue in case I change my mind and decide to use them anyway. On longer projects, I also create a fresh file each month so I can track the progress of the project and raid old drafts for bits I wrote better the first time. This digital version of the overstuffed file cabinet has saved me more times than I care to count, but it is increasingly clear to me that if I ever have the misfortune to get famous, I will need to delete all these old files and throw my hard drive in a lake somewhere. If I don’t, and a work of mine achieves lasting value, then my children and grandchildren, abetted by scholars and editors with dollar signs in their eyes, may well spend the decades after my death boring the hell out of my readers with all my failed early drafts.

via www.themillions.com

 

 See Bob's web site here

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