So, I think I have a good idea of what the revisions of Ashland need to look like. And a good idea about the parts that need to be rewritten. And I’ve decided to give this Joe Hill idea a try. I’m retyping it. I have the old version on the left and the new blank page on the right and I just look over and type what works and type new stuff where I need to.
Here’s the part I think, if I were to guess, Joe Hill likes about it. If you come to a part where you’re like “Ugh, I have to type all that?” you know it needs to go.
I don’t know if I’ll stick with it the whole way through, but for now, it’s kind of blowing my mind about how easily and clearly it shows you what needs to go.
I tried this with my not-so-great novella. I got about a 1/3 of the way through and said f**k it. But in theory I think it’s an excellent exercise for exactly the reason it makes you cut to the bone on unnecessary words.