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Sondra Quinn

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Member Since: Jul, 2006

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Writing Dialogue
12/18/2006 11:58:36 PM

One question I often get is about how to write good dialogue. One thing I do is I listen to others talking. I love to sit in malls or in waiting rooms and just hear different conversations going on around me. Last week while I was waiting to get my hair cut was a perfect example-- a man came in who was known by two of the other women and the conversation between the three of them gave me lots of fodder for my mill-- it wasn't anything earth shattering-- they spoke about their jobs and their church, but it was how they put their sentences together, the little mannerisms they used, the way I was able to distinguish who was speaking by listening to their voices.

Take books that you enjoy and read the various bits of dialogue throughout the book. Notice how the writer uses the dialogue to move things forward, to establish the personalities of the characters. Watch how the writer uses attributions-- the "he says/she says" part of dialogue.

Then practice writing some dialogue yourself and find a good friend to read through it with you as if you wee reading a script. If it sounds silly when you are speaking it aloud, odds are that it IS silly and needs to be tweaked a little-- or a lot. If need by, for inspiration, go and find a lovely bench in the busiest part of a shopping mall and sit yourself down. Listen again to the flow of dialogue around you,

Listen. And then write.

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More Blogs by Sondra Quinn
• Let Us Eat Cake! - Saturday, January 13, 2007
• Review of Love's Challenge from Euro-Reviews - Saturday, January 06, 2007
• Love in a Haze of Mentholyptus - Saturday, January 06, 2007
•  Writing Dialogue - Monday, December 18, 2006  

• Cupid's Library Review of Love Under Suspicion - Tuesday, November 21, 2006
• Texas Book Festival - Wednesday, November 01, 2006
• Halloween - Friday, October 27, 2006
• Door Hangars - Tuesday, September 26, 2006
• Romance Is Not Dead - Sunday, August 20, 2006
• URLS for the reviews - Thursday, July 27, 2006
• 2 Good Reviews - Thursday, July 27, 2006

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