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Editing a manuscript when I hit this gem: “…almost started to end the conversation …”
and I am going to let them keep it. It’s a literary work not genre. The rule of “we don’t care what you almost did, started to do, might do, could do – we only want to know about what the character DID do – action-all-the-time.” doesn’t apply for the thinky-feely character emotional study of literary work.
I’m going to curl up in a ball or hit something hard when I done this 70K edit.
You – you genre(*) writers – don’t ever write “start to end” or “almost started”. Just don’t!
If you do, fix it in drafts before your editor sees it.
(*) Genre – romance, mystery, science fiction, fantasy, urban fantasy, horror, etc.