View Full Version : Do you horde your clippings?

02-04-2008, 06:36 PM
Not nail clippings, you weirdo. Your offcuts, your snips, your plodding passages of purply prose, your murdered darlings, everything you excise with a scalpel or an A-bomb from draft to draft. I find I'm starting to put most of what I snip into a file called "tasty offcuts", on the deranged notion that one day I'll salvage something beautiful, maybe finding the perfect opening passage for a novel or a witty bit of banter that will fit into my other story if I just change the character names around.

What do you do? Have you ever been glad you saved something that didn't make the cut five years ago?

02-04-2008, 08:03 PM
Do you horde your clippings?

No... but I hoard them :) I do like the idea of a horde of clippings though. Maybe they could sack Rome?

Buck up please... we're supposed to be writers here :)


02-04-2008, 10:07 PM
I keep everything of any significant size that's been cut. Sometimes for content which I may use later on and sometimes just because I'm in love with the language of the bits that won't make it into the final draft.

02-04-2008, 10:57 PM
Everything I cut out goes into a separate file. And yes, I have used them elsewhere, either a liked a description, or a scene, and it worked better in a different story.

02-04-2008, 10:59 PM
I save everything cut. I will sometimes go back and use a cut scene later, put it into something else, or just re-read it to enjoy it for myself with the realization it will never see the light of day.

02-04-2008, 11:02 PM
I keep some of the material that I cut - it really depends upon if it is being totally cut or if it is just getting rewritten. If the ax is in hand, than yes I do, but if the quill is poised to take over I dash it away and bring new material into being.

I also have a totally separate notebook where I will scribble down thoughts, scenes, dialogue, or other "stuff" - I do not know if these qualify as snipping or clipping, but they are jots of thought that are worth saving (and clearing up some of my personal RAM) if only for the fact that they could be used some other time, on some other rhyme :)

02-04-2008, 11:05 PM
I keep a file on one-liners, orphaned paragraphs, and 'where the f*ck does this go' pages in high hopes that they will find a home someday. :}

Soccer Mom
02-05-2008, 12:28 AM
Hi, my name is SoccerMom and I hoard clippings. I've actually taken bits of scenes that didn't make the cut and polished them into flash fiction pieces.

nancy sv
02-05-2008, 12:55 AM
I send myself a copy of everything to my gmail and then never delete them. So theoretically, yes - I have them. If I ever wanted to find them I would have to go back through all those back-up files in gmail though.

02-05-2008, 01:41 AM
If they're fairly long I save 'em at the end of the file I'm working on. Usually be the time I finish I've forgotten all about them.

02-05-2008, 03:27 AM
Yes. I don't think I will ever use them, but I like to keep them to look back on.

I recently just deleted an entire chapter because, while it had some interesting things going on, it didn't further the story as a whole AND it was in the beginning, where I really need to hook the reader. Le sigh!

02-05-2008, 08:35 AM
No... but I hoard them :) I do like the idea of a horde of clippings though. Maybe they could sack Rome?

Buck up please... we're supposed to be writers here :)


Aw, crap, how did I not see that. Mods, fix my title before anyone notices.

02-05-2008, 09:21 PM
Yes. I'm not sure why, but it's a secret (well, not so much anymore) obsession of mine. :D

02-05-2008, 10:30 PM
Of course! Everything I cut goes into a new file called The Bin. Then if I need to go fishing, I do so -- I managed to salvage the end of a truly wretched flash piece, and turned it into quite a nice little short story.

Why throw it away. Everything but the hooves, that's my motto. ;)

02-06-2008, 10:59 PM
Why throw it away. Everything but the hooves, that's my motto. ;)
But the hooves are where they get the glue from! We need GLUE! It holds stuff together...like stamps and envelopes and...other stuff.

02-06-2008, 11:26 PM
I must be wild and reckless, but I don't save anything that doesn't make the cut in a particular piece. One click of the 'delete' button, and it's history.

The Scip
02-06-2008, 11:43 PM
I keep everything, even the handwritten stuff. But most of it is put in another file.

02-06-2008, 11:50 PM
Definitely. I save my entire first draft so when I go out later to speak and promote the book, I have material to talk about that wasn't included in the book as published. (Some of it is on my webpage as well.) It's like an Easter Egg or Bonus Material on a DVD....

02-07-2008, 08:13 AM
I save anything major. I wouldn't bother with sentences and paragraphs unless it was outstanding in some way. I have sacrificed a couple of tiny darlings lately. POV violation, but they were such fun sentences... *sigh*