In the process of creating Lighter Than My Shadow, most of the editing happened at the storyboard stage. I didn’t want to spend time making finished artwork for a scene that might later be cut, so I tried to make all those decisions whilst still working in rough.
Despite all my best efforts, though, there were some scenes that did get worked up into finished artwork but didn’t make it in to the book. Sometimes they just didn’t flow properly with the story, perhaps went into detail that wasn’t necessary or interesting, or confused the message I was trying to get across. Sometimes they were scenes I’d put in for sentimental reasons: memories that were important to me but distracted from the story I was trying to tell, and this example is one of those.
This scene happens after a difficult mealtime, when I’ve just thrown my dinner across the room and stormed off (around page 159-160, if you have the book). My Dad has tried to comfort me with words but it didn’t help. What did help was the wordless support of our family dog, George.
Many of the deleted scenes I look back on and am glad they didn’t make the book. I can see in retrospect how they were perhaps clumsy or unnecessary, and know I made the right decision. With this one I’m not so sure. I can certainly see how it’s not vitally important and doesn’t help the story in the same way as the version that appeared in the book. Still, I’m still a bit sad there wasn’t space for it, to show more of how important George was in that stage of my recovery.
That’s interesting about wanting to put scenes in for sentimental reasons and how it doesn’t always serve the narrative.