The heck with this, I know — but I am editing the book again.
I thought I was done, or done for now. At 138K a little big but, you know, big-boned. It was fine. I could write new stories now, send out queries, sure that some kind agent would understand me.
A major contest starting in three weeks has a limit of 125K. I asked my wife and my writing group, and most everyone thought it was worth it to try to reach the goal, contest or no. They are right, of course. But it is an aggressive deadline.
To look fresh at the material, I chopped the file into chunks around 3500 words long. I edit them in random order, with a simple goal of losing ten percent from each file. 350 words is not so intimidating. Of course I also discover things that need work, scenes that perform less than they should. But this is a good thing.
Modern cloud-storage systems — I use Dropbox — and smartphone editors make the file available anywhere, whenever I am idle. I hope to replace news sites and games for a couple of weeks, and just edit everywhere.
My wife is going through 19K words in the last third of the book. It will be interesting to see what she comes up with. I also now have readers and I hope they can tell me what parts left them cold.
I am humbled that I am still not done.