Word Counts and Dead Scenes

I went spelunking in the morgue file today. You know. The place where all the tangents and cut plot lines go when you can’t bear to part with them, but you’re fairly sure they don’t belong in this particular book.

I’m looking for things for my two main characters to do while they’re alone together and wandering around the woods. It’s not a romantic interval, or at least, not overtly… so that takes a lot off the table.

I’ve isolated a few things that must happen in the time frame I’m talking about, because, of course, there isn’t anyplace else for them to go. And I’ve figured out just exactly how long they’re wandering around in the woods. And… I’m probably going to be all right. Probably.

The thing that amazes me is just how fast I can go from well and truly over the word count range for my genre to under. Where, exactly, did all those words go? Well, aside from the ones about furniture… and the ones about bath tubs… Well, never mind. Morgue file.

I’m to a point where I’m sure the story won’t be any shorter than it is, right now. I think. But I wish I had more wiggle room.

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