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woman who reads too much

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02:35 am: the cut
Just sent mail to my daughter:
Cut almost 100 words. Mostly adverbs. Sorry, adverbs.

Young women use a lot of adverbs.

Context is that Nixie is applying for a grant for next year. Her project proposal and personal statement must be no more than 500 words each. They are 700-800 words each. She is too stressed by writing them to be able to see where to cut.

I used to have an image from the endnotes of a scanlation of the first volume of Kaoru Mori's Emma: Kaoru Mori's editor keeps pointing out things that could be cut, and she keeps exclaiming, "But that's the most important part!" I loved that! In the translation that got published in English, she says instead, "But that's very important!" Maybe that is a more accurate translation but it isn't as good.

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[User Picture]
Date:September 17th, 2014 02:07 pm (UTC)
So, so resonate--y'know a fair amount of my work now is editing student personal statements for college applications. Often, as the student and I speak, we can find a way to cut but preserve the aspect s/he really cares about; other times, I say, "but you said it already"; rarely, "Yeah, that is good, but for the word limit, it has to go."

I think many students think of each individual part of a piece, not the piece as a whole, so they have little idea of "but that part has already been said." It's my theory, anyway.
[User Picture]
Date:September 18th, 2014 02:49 am (UTC)
I remember a story about a letter that ended "I'm sorry this is so long: I didn't have time to make it shorter."
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