Paring Knife

Hello and welcome to 2017.  We’re still less than one week in, so I figure it’s safe to provide that welcome.

Over the past few months, I’ve been working on a number of different projects, with the chief project, which has consumed many hours since Christmas, being getting a final pared down edit of my current manuscript, Absconded by Sin, so that I may meet submission criteria for many of the publishers out there.  Right now, I’m focused on one publisher, which has been so gracious and so understanding as I have worked to reduce my novel from 187k words to just under 122k.  That’s right: a third of my novel is on the cutting room floor. Today, with one third of that novel in the ether, I officially submitted my novel for consideration.  It’s the first time I’ve submitted any work of fiction to anyone in more than five months.

It was a difficult task, trying to pare my novel down and still have the same cohesion.  A lot of characters lost much of their depth.  In particular, one scene that called for two characters (and was one character’s swan song) was reduced to one character talking to himself.  Another scene, meant to illustrate the conflict plaguing one of the two antagonists in the story and provide a motivation for that previous character’s swan song, is also no more.  The character, modeled after the Indian in the Scarlet Letter, is now reduced to a bit part, just like his predecessor.

In the mean time, I have been working on a lot of work related projects.  My Nanowrimo project from 2016 is still on my mind, but I have two lengthy reports on the horizon. We’re under NDA for both, but they’ll amount to about 600 pages when all is said and done.  I have another project, a series of autobiographical vignettes, that I’m working on for a friend.  I still have quite a ways to go on those, and I was hoping to have them done by Christmas.  Oops!

At least I’m doing something I’ve intended to do for a long time — writing in my blog.  It’s not much, but hopefully it will keep coming in the new year!

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