Monday, January 09, 2006

The Romance Police

This weekend I met with two of my best friends/critique partners whom I will call the Romance Police, duly sworn to make sure this writer delivers on the romantic promise of the novel, doesn't pull any punches in the emotions, and puts that emotion in dialogue where necessary and not summary narrative.

The police were called to inspect the first love scene section of the novel, rewritten because this writer had, alas, pulled some puches and summarized some essential emotion. Duly warned, I have endeavored to rectify the situation, changing the point of view on an entire section and expanding a few sentences into a new, second love scene.

I believe I've succeed, as the police said only a few fragments still need tweaking (as expected after a critique), and one officer joked that she needed to shower afterward. I didn't ask her if it was the first love scene of the section or the new, second love scene of the section. I'll have to look up the report.

But that's only one section of the novel where citations have been issued by the Romance Police. The police have also put me to work fixing violations in the ending. As one officer wrote on my draft pages "NO! NO! NO! You can't have him walk away again!" Fortunately, this writer met that remark with good humor. Okay. I can fix that. The question is, how long will it take me?

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