Let it rest before you cut

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Baking is like editing

 This week I tortured my husband, son and daughter.

For 24hours.

My alter-ego TDG – the domestic goddess – possessed me and I became a ruthless, territorial creature.

Even after they begged me repeatedly – each with their own heart-string tugging appeal – I didn’t relent. The torture tool?

A cherry fruit cake.

IT was a monument to fruit: filled with cranberries, cherries, mixed peel, raisins (Note to TDG: replace raisins with sultanas next time), mixed peel, orange zest, juice, and all the other yummy cake goodies.

After a journey of overnight maceration, creaming, beating, folding and carefully caressing the mixture, I’d gotten rather possessive.

A spell had been cast.

It was ‘my pre-cious.’

Its delights had lured me close to the edge of madness.

So when the recipe called for the cake (after 1.5 hours in the oven) to be left in the tin, until cold … well, I had to be tough.

No nibbles, no cutting, no tasting.


Let it rest

Just like that cake, you need to let your writing rest.

Let it sit a while before you cut.

Twenty four hours is ideal.

You’ll look at it with a new set of eyes.

Time lets the flavour of your ideas develop.

The keenness of your hand in shaping the words will have finessed.

And your mind will have attuned to the needs of the taster [your reader] rather than the creator [you].

Like baking a great cake, let your words rest.

Then you can cut.


Eating your cake …

What other baking [and editing] rules do you apply for great results?  Drop a comment below.


Photo credit: lynn.gardner via photopin cc

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