As in sculpture, sometimes what you take away is more important than what you leave.
In 1978, Elie Wiesel gave an interview—something he rarely did—to the Paris Review, a few months before his fiftieth birthday. “It was a rare privilege to converse with him,” said the interviewer, John S. Friedman. “His dark, deep-set eyes were like the eyes of one of his characters in which ‘joy and despair wage a silent, implacable, eternal battle.’ ”
The interviewer asked about Wiesel’s writing process. He said he writes in the morning because it’s never a struggle then: “It’s a pleasant agony. I am myself only when I work.” But he quickly focuses in on the most important aspect—editing:
Writing is not like painting where you add. It is not what you put on the canvas that the reader sees. Writing is more like a scuplture where you remove, you eliminate to make the work visible. Even those pages you remove somehow remain. 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.
In Elie Wiesel: Conversations, edited by Robert Franciosi
That’s where a good editor can be a huge help. May I be of assistance?