Friday, January 10, 2014

Wisdom in Action

Action. You know the old saw. It speaks louder than words, right?

It's funny how easy it is to say, which may be some kind of irony in its own right, and how hard it is to really internalize. An example: a bad guy in a book that will never see the light of day tells the heroine he intends to kill her. He follows the words with action. In my first draft of that scene, the heroine launched into a three page dialogue with the guy, before taking a swing at him.

This made her (and me) stupid and weak, things that neither of us wanted to be.

So I rewrote it. Now, the bad guy tries to kill her and she says nothing. Instead, she snarls and tries to take the guy apart. Martial arts skillz. She has 'em. It's a much stronger scene and she's a much stronger character. Alas. That vastly improved scene couldn't rescue the rest of the book. Which may mean there's wisdom in knowing when to take action and when to hold action. Like I'm holding on to that story.

There's also wisdom in knowing *which* action to take. I shouldn't be writing a blog post. I should be melting my keyboard to finish the final chapters of a book that's due in two weeks. I hope you'll pardon the brevity of my post, but I'm going to abide by the old 'action speaks louder than words' saying, take all of my words and go fit them to action in the final battle scene.

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