Not Showing Your Work

“There is a difference between a book of two hundred pages from the very beginning, and a book of two hundred pages which is the result of an original eight hundred pages. The six hundred are there. Only you don’t see them.” ~Elie Wiesel

This makes me think of school when, in math class, you were told to show your work (to show the steps you took to get the answer to the math question you were given). All the work was important to getting to your conclusion but usually no one sees it, or has a lot of interest in all those details. Writing is like that too. There is a lot of work that goes into a story which never makes it on to the printed page. I think, as a writer, we have to make sure we don’t show our work, the steps in the process we took in reaching the conclusion of our story. The only steps that should show are the advancement/ development of our characters and the plot of the story itself.

Leave a comment