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Killing Your (Other) Darlings

Killing Your Other Darlings

“In writing, you must kill all your darlings.” —William Faulkner.

Have you heard that quote? It’s more than likely that you’ve not only heard it, you were already nodding your head at it as you saw me starting off this blog post with it. Faulkner’s famous advice has been put into practice by writers and creatives everywhere, often to great success.

In case you’re not sure what to think of Faulkner’s advice, here’s another version from writer/director Joss Whedon (The Avengers, Firefly, etc.):

Here’s one trick that I learned early on. If something isn’t working, if you have a story that you’ve built and it’s blocked and you can’t figure it out, take your favorite scene, or your very best idea or set-piece, and cut it. It’s brutal, but sometimes inevitable. That thing may find its way back in, but cutting it is usually an enormously freeing exercise.

And you’re probably nodding your head at this quote as well. “Ouch!” you say. “That advice hurts, but it’s sooooooooo true!”

Okay. What about your other darlings?

“What other darlings?” you ask. “I’ve already cut my favorite scene out of my novel and it’s better because I did that.”

Great! Now let’s look at the darlings on your website. Continue reading Killing Your (Other) Darlings