Make It Work #8: Dial Up Your Dialogue (#writingtips #amwriting #amwritingfiction)

Hello, Friends and Scribes!


What do I love?


Below is a video of a sample of how I might work and play with character interaction.

Who are they?  What do they want? What is their relationship to each other? Where are they?

So many questions that can be answered through a character tête-à-tête or all out multi-voiced yak-session in the bathroom of the Cracker Barrel.

Most of my stories have some sort of dialogue exchange. One of my most favorite characters that I have ever written has a mouth that shoots off like a Gatling gun.

When characters speak to each other it reveals a lot about them, plus you can sneak in descriptions and setting a bit at a time. Quirks can really shine in an exchange or reveal how a characters behavior changes (or doesn’t) when they go from once place to another.

Other languages fascinate me and I often use character conversations to highlight those sounds and words.  Maybe that Nana says something in her first language to insult a rude stranger and a random person behind her snickers. Patterns of speech color your prose and make your characters human.  Are they arguing and interrupting each other? Is someone trying to get a word in edgewise and failing? Are the characters even having the same conversation even while talking to each other?

The possibilities are infinite.

Like poetry, dialogue lends itself very well to movement of sound and breaking all those rules.  Bend grammar, break spelling, and use punctuation to give it a heart.

Be the e.e. cummings of dialogue.


Inquiring minds want to know:

What say you? Love dialogue or hate it?



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