Never Trash Anything!

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“Cut this scene,” the editor says, so off you go to select the doomed section and delete it.

In the words of Darth Vader: Nooooo!

Never delete anything. Cut? Sure. But never throw anything away (in writing, that is). Even if you think it’s stupid and useless, it could be used down the line for something else and save you a lot of extra work.

So here’s what you do with scenes that end up on the chopping block:

1. Categorise

Is it an everyday conversation? A breakup scene? A chase? A fight? Determine what type of scene it is first, then copy it.

2. File

Create a document for that type of scene. So, let’s say it’s a chase scene. Create a file called “Chase Scenes” or, if you’re like me, “Chase Scene Trash.” Paste the scene in there, add some kind of text break afterwards, then save.

3. Add

As you write more and more stories, you’ll end up with more and more “trash” scenes. Create new docs for them or add them to already existing ones. So if you cut a chase scene from another book later on, you can just add it to the document you already made.

4. Use

Maybe you get stuck on a certain scene in a book down the line or you need some really good dialogue that you just can’t pinpoint right then. That’s what these old scenes are for! Take and tweak them as you will. In the end, they’re not trash at all!

If you remember one thing from this post, remember this: never delete a good scene. Chances are it’ll be relevant somewhere else later on. Follow these steps to save your extra scenes and half the work is done for you!

Happy writing!

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Photo by Gary Chan on Unsplash

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When you write as much as I do, you have to take frequent breaks from sitting. A standing desk (not a whole desk, but a mini desk that will sit on top of my current desk with my laptop, keyboard, and mouse and extend upward) will allow me to continue working while maintaining that good blood flow to my brain. Thank you so much for your support that allows me to keep producing free content. God bless you! ♥️ E.J.


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