Kill Your Darlings

Say what?

Cindy has been mumbling these words for the past couple weeks. She says that “kill your darlings” is a rule of writing. It means don’t get so attached to what you think is the perfect sentence or character or storyline that you can’t cut it or change it to make your story even better.

Sometimes killing your darlings is really hard as she found out again this past week. She didn’t have to cut a sentence or two. She ruthlessly hacked away half her story. And it made her pretty sad for a couple days, even though she knows that what’s left will be better in the end. Plus, the stuff she cut isn’t gone forever. It can be turned into another book someday.

Which reminds me . . . did you know that I was in another story once? That was another time Cindy had to kill her darlings. Only that time she killed the whole book.

Well, except for me and Dewey and Eric. Luckily she saved the three of us and wrote us a whole new story. Whew! Let me tell you, that was a close one!

The first story was pretty good. But our new one is much better. I mean, who wouldn’t rather be Flash, Feline Extraordinaire?

I sure am glad I’m just the main character and not the one who has to make these tough decisions. And you thought writing was easy!

I don’t know about you, but I think I’ll stick to answering my questions for . . .

Hayley wants to know, “How do know what to write about on Ask Flash? Isn’t it hard to come up with ideas?”

Sometimes it is hard to come up with things to write about on my blog. That’s when I try to think about what my fans would like to know. But most of the time I have plenty of opinions I’m happy to share. And when I can’t think of anything at all, I let someone else have a turn!

Dot asks, “What is the setting of Cindy’s new story?”

The new story is set in an imaginary town called Silverville. It was inspired by Ouray, which is in the mountains of southwestern Colorado. This is the story in a nutshell: While trying to stop the town’s crooked mayor from turning his grandpa’s hot springs motel into a tacky resort casino, 12-year-old Zach McKinney makes some unlikely friends, learns the truth about the Indian legends surrounding the healing waters, and finally finds the place where he truly belongs.

Dot also asks, “Is the main character in the new story as cool as you?”

He’s a human. What do you think? But the good news is there are three cats in the story AND a mountain lion! Right now my efforts to have them play a bigger part in the story seem to be paying off. (Shhh! Don’t tell anyone, but they’re part of the Indian legend!)

Drat, drat, double DRAT! I’m almost out of questions again. Surely there’s something you’re dying to know. Thanks to Hayley and Dot I have just enough for next week, but please, please send me more!

About flashthecatblog

I am the Professional Mews for Cindy Strandvold, as well as a huge fan of middle-grade books. Which, coincidentally, is the age Cindy writes for.
This entry was posted in Ask Flash, Flash Has Attitude, The New Book and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

14 Responses to Kill Your Darlings

  1. Dot says:

    Flash, the title of this post scared me until I read the whole thing. Did any of your fans know that writing was sometimes so painful? I read Cindy’s first book, which she totally killed. I loved it and hope that someday parts of it show up in another book she writes. I am glad some of the characters lived, especially you who was called Snickers in it.

  2. Yay! A question from Kaitlynn for me to answer next week. Anybody else? Pleeeeaazzze!

  3. Anna Starks says:

    Ohhhh Ohhh, I have a question for u!!! =)

  4. Anna Starks says:

    Okay Flash!! =)

  5. Great question, Kaitlynn! I’ll answer it next Friday!

  6. Jack says:

    Wait… why did you put scissors on this post? It seemed like with a scissors picture and a title called Kill Your Darlings that you had to kill somebody in the book. With scissors.

    • No, I didn’t kill anybody with scissors. But the picture got your attention, didn’t it? Hee hee. The scissors represented cutting things out of the story, even though Cindy really just uses the delete key.

  7. Kaitlynn says:

    Ok flash!! that`s 2 questions you have to answer for me! 🙂 😉

  8. Kaitlynn says:

    Flash! You have 10,854 hits!!!! SOOOOOOOO close to 11,000!!!!! You have a lot of friends!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Great job!!!!!

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