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    I'm studying... Professional Writing

    I'm interested in... Writing, TV, rollerblading, football, volleyball, paintball, saxophone, sleep. Sleep should probably be number one, actually.

    My study level is... University undergraduate
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    (Original post by ThatWriterKid)
    I'm studying... Professional Writing

    I'm interested in... Writing, TV, rollerblading, football, volleyball, paintball, saxophone, sleep. Sleep should probably be number one, actually.

    My study level is... University undergraduate
    Welcome to :tsr:

    Any advice for me regarding trimming the padding from a story?
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    Nice to meet you!

    Trimming padding is a funny thing, because while it's basically removing anything unnecessary to the plot, it could be something as small as one paragraph to as large as a whole chapter (if we're working with a novel and not, say, a screenplay, where it would be one line of dialogue versus and entire scene, for example.)

    My usual method of trimming, however, is to wait until I've completed my first draft (first drafts are meant to be rubbish) and look over the story as a whole. If there is any point that lags and it feels like you're just itching to move to the next part, it can probably go. If you're bored reading a chapter over again, it probably needs parts of it cut, or at the very least reworked to liven it up a bit. When you have a complete piece in front of you, it's pretty easy to pick out the obvious lapses and get rid of them.

    Another good thing to try is an outline -- whether it be bullet points or a timeline of the entire story, or a timeline for each character showing each character arch, etc, etc. With that in hand, you can back up a little and see the whole picture. Why did this character develop so much in only two chapters and this other character didn't change at all? Maybe that development was too sudden and should be brought down a notch, and the second half of the transition brought about later, or even not at all. Maybe this one character isn't even necessary. This occurrence over here seems almost like a sidequest now that I look at the plot so black-and-white, so I should probably cut that.

    Once you can take a step back from the work you've been so absorbed with, it's easier to see what bits and pieces should go. Also, having a peer reader who you can trust to be honest with you always helps! They'll tell you which parts were boring, which parts seems rushed, what characters they found flat, etc, etc.

    Hope this helps! Thanks for your question!
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    (Original post by ThatWriterKid)
    Nice to meet you!

    Trimming padding is a funny thing, because while it's basically removing anything unnecessary to the plot, it could be something as small as one paragraph to as large as a whole chapter (if we're working with a novel and not, say, a screenplay, where it would be one line of dialogue versus and entire scene, for example.)

    My usual method of trimming, however, is to wait until I've completed my first draft (first drafts are meant to be rubbish) and look over the story as a whole. If there is any point that lags and it feels like you're just itching to move to the next part, it can probably go. If you're bored reading a chapter over again, it probably needs parts of it cut, or at the very least reworked to liven it up a bit. When you have a complete piece in front of you, it's pretty easy to pick out the obvious lapses and get rid of them.

    Another good thing to try is an outline -- whether it be bullet points or a timeline of the entire story, or a timeline for each character showing each character arch, etc, etc. With that in hand, you can back up a little and see the whole picture. Why did this character develop so much in only two chapters and this other character didn't change at all? Maybe that development was too sudden and should be brought down a notch, and the second half of the transition brought about later, or even not at all. Maybe this one character isn't even necessary. This occurrence over here seems almost like a sidequest now that I look at the plot so black-and-white, so I should probably cut that.

    Once you can take a step back from the work you've been so absorbed with, it's easier to see what bits and pieces should go. Also, having a peer reader who you can trust to be honest with you always helps! They'll tell you which parts were boring, which parts seems rushed, what characters they found flat, etc, etc.

    Hope this helps! Thanks for your question!
    Thank you, very helpful.
 
 
 
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