Saturday, June 7, 2008

Dry as dust

The current section I'm writing, that is.

You know, it occurs to me that I've complained about most of my chapters. But in the end, they're fine. But here I'm writing a section on (spoiler alert!) jurisdiction and procedural law. For the argument I'm making, I think it needs to be in there. The problem is that, for reasons that I won't go into, I know too damned much about this topic. Canon law? Check. Ius commune? Check. The decretals of Innocent III that were the foundation for the high medieval procedure known as inquisitio? Darn tootin' I know that.

The problem is that I can't seem to shut up about this stuff. I know a gazillion little details, and this part of my brain refuses to generalize, for fear of being called out. So this incredibly dry section is up to 4,000 words, including footnotes. And I can't have eight pages of dry, boring shit in my first chapter (already not exactly the attention-grabber that the later chapters are). So, I haven't posted these 4,000 words in my count, but am instead going to force myself to chop this section down to 2,500 words. That will be five in-print pages, by my reckoning, which will probably still be three pages too long for some people, but them's the breaks.

This slash-and-burn is my goal for the next two days. I'll check in Monday night and let you know how it goes.

(Oh, and also? Visit to the Lady Doctor on Monday. Life just keeps getting better and better.)


Anonymous said...

If you need someone to read it who's not a legal scholar, let me know.


Notorious Ph.D. said...

m, you rock. And I just might.