I completed a short story for submission to an anthology today. When I finished the first draft I realized that I had gone over the maximum
word count per the guidelines. I'm not sure why, but I convinced myself
that it was 5000 words when it was actually 4000. I cut roughly 700
words from the story and thought, with this limited word count, the
story will surely suffer from the loss! When I reread it, however, it
was a much cleaner, crisper, better organized piece. It's funny how well
you can identify and erase your "fluff" when you have to! It was
definitely an eye opening exercise for me, anyway.