Day 71 – Cutting out and adding characters can be risky business

Day seventy-one of my 365 Day Writing Project.

Words: 500

It was a slow weekend of writing for me. I wrote a total of only 400 words between Saturday and Sunday. Not stellar, but at least I kept things moving forward. I encountered a problem which halted my writing flow to a snail’s pace. The problem was my decision to add an unplanned character.

As I write this I realize how ridiculous that sounds, that adding a character could cause a problem with my writing process. But it did. I think it was not so much the addition of this person as it was the timing of it. I introduced him at a point in the story that in hindsight, was maybe not a good time. I am now trying to tamp down the urge to go back and re-write it. But I will not. I will wait, I will wait, I will wait. Write now, edit later. Write NOW, edit LATER. (Yes, you’ve heard me chant this before because I literally need to remind my obsessive-compulsive, hyper-editing self over and over and over. And yes, it works.)

Now that I have added this new character, who has a small role to fill, I will need to later decide whether to cut him out completely or change the timing of his introduction. I foresee another slowing of progress because of this, but I suppose that is okay. It’s all part of the creative process and I must embrace the bad with the good. And who knows, maybe later when I read it I’ll think the character’s introduction is brilliant in timing. Or not. And if THAT flip-flopping chain of thought isn’t incentive enough to wait to edit later, I don’t know what is.

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