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Pub Rants = Author Aids

The title of Kirstin Nelson's blog is Pub Rants but it seems to me that far from ranting, she's one of the most helpful agents out there when it comes to offering advice to authors, both aspiring wannabes like me and already published folks.

Her recent post on the importance of author websites is an excellent example. She has several good suggestions, including the need to keep updating the site frequently, and to make it interactive if at all possible. I also liked the idea of interviewing the characters in the book—fun for the writer and informative for the reader.

But one of my favorite ideas is Kristin's suggestion to post deleted scenes. Learning what to cut in a book was one of the hardest things I had to do as a writer. When a scene reads well, it's difficult to believe the book could be better without it. But if it doesn't advance the story line, and it doesn't tell us something about the characters that we don't already know, then probably the book will be better without it. The better written the scene is, the more difficult it is to make myself cut it. My Helpful Friend (see earlier posts) refers to this phenomenon as the need to "kill your darlings."

Knowing your darlings will live on the web if nowhere else could make it easier to kill them.


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