Editing: Can a Scene be Too Powerful?
Edits, edits, edits.
They can be so monotonous.
Until you hit a section that needs some careful rewriting. I had a section like that, but not because it was bad, believe it or not. Well, I suppose it was bad, but in a good way. Confused? Let me just tell you what my editor said about chapter 8:
"This scene is so well written and real, that even in chapter 13 and beyond, the reader has a fear that ... when she unlocks the cabin door, when she gets the phone call, when something's happened to **** ... I wonder if the chapter is too powerful ..."
Sorry I had to leave some things out, but you get the picture. We can't hand out major spoilers, so let me just say it does a writer's heart good to be told her work is "written so well" or its "too real" or "too powerful". In essence, my editor is saying the I have drawn the reader into the story so deeply it makes for uncomfortable reading.
Is there such a thing? Well, yes. I've actually been on the reading end of such books, so I know it can happen. Regarding "Finding Beth", I edited that chapter just today and I think we found a way to reassure the reader without taking them out of the story. I hope. We'll see what my editors thinks when I return it to them.
What about you? Have you ever read a book that was so intense you had to put it down? Tell me about it.