Damn you, Jane Austen!

Okay, now that I got that off my chest … I’ve learned in my brief experience that agents/publishers and readers desire books written in quick, decisive language that gets straight to the point. They don’t even like adjectives if you can avoid them.

This is a bummer for me. As an avid reader of all things classic I have a knack at descriptive “flowery” language. My favorite authoresses are Jane Austen, Fanny Burney and Ann Radcliffe. Below is a photo of my personal bookshelf. The two bottom shelves hold my classics, the top shelf holds more modern books, including my guilty pleasure … vampires.Image

It has been a constant battle to strip my sentences of excessive words, but I’m making progress. My manuscript, the one I mentioned in my Mission Statement, was supposed to be a paranormal romance, involving aliens, written in the classic vernacular that I adore. I thought it would make it interesting to have something from the future written in a style from the past, but I was wrong.

I believe I was able to easily cut 10,000 words from my manuscript, and could probably do more. Being that the genre prefers between 80,000 and 100,000 words, my cut put me squarely at 93,500, but much of it was Filler.

For folks like myself, my advice is to seek out more modern authors if you need guidance. Jane Austen is in the past. Though I love her works, her style no longer suits today’s quick-minded, impatient reader.

Good luck out there and share your experiences with me!

E.E.

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