I looked at Lavender Blue‘s first act and realized it was 46,244 words long.
That’s too many.
I’m not really that fixated on numbers, but I know that readers are going to need to be turned into a new story long before the halfway point. I’m not sure how long this book is going to be, but 46,000 words is definitely the halfway point or close to it. (It was contracted at 50,000 words, but that ain’t happening). I need the murder at the halfway point, end of Act Two, so really, just no on that length.
So I did what I always do. I made a list of the scenes with their word counts, which showed me that eight of them were really transitions, not scenes (too short, no conflict) and then studied the remaining, twenty-five actual scenes, looking for what I could cut (over 10,000 words had to go which was around four scenes).