by Shelt Garner
For far too long, I struggle to understand the fucking structure of my “texbook,” Stieg Larsson’s “The Girl Who Played With Fire.” It just did not make any sense. I tried to figure out basic things like the midpoint switch and…I simply could not find it.
Well, I recently discovered that the novel that we know of in english as “The Girl Who Played With Fire” was actually ONE novel, cut into two. This makes a lot more sense because now it is clear that the cliffhanger at the end of the novel is actually the midpoint of a far larger novel.
The thing about the novels about Lisbeth Salander that Larsson wrote is they would have greatly benefit from a grim reaper of an editor. With “The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo” you could probably have compressed or revised that novel down to about to a tight 100,000 words and it would have been just as big — if not bigger a success as it was.
Meanwhile, the massive novel that “The Girl Who Played With Fire” is the first half of, probably could have just been one novel, if an editor with a scythe had cut and cut and cut the novel down to what was essential to tell the story.
As it is, all of Larsson’s novels are bloated and became a success despite themselves.
Anyway, now watch me rewrite my own novel is it balloons into a tome significantly over 100,000 words. UGH.