Photo Credit: WritersDock
Let me first tell you that this post will NOT tell you how to write dialogue in your work. Because you likely know better than I do how to do that. Instead I’ll be discussing my thoughts on the topic.
Back in May 2013 when I was on the verge of walking across the stage at my university’s graduation, I became overly anxious about the whole prospect of writing a book. I’d now been telling people for months that I would be writing books after graduation and now the time was finally arriving. I was terrified that i wouldn’t be able to do it at all. But one of the things I was most scared of was writing dialogue. You might have just crinkled your brow because dialogue isn’t scary, right? Well think about it. Casual conversation is not scripted. Sentences are not always complete and people generally speak quite differently from the way they write. There’s quite a bit to take into account before writing dialogue. At least in my opinion.
I mean, what if the dialogue I wrote seemed unnatural. Or forced. Or made no sense at all. Or the reader couldn’t tell who was talking. Or what if all of the characters sound exactly the same? See, you may believe you’re pretty good at writing dialogue, but that doesn’t mean it’s easy. I’ve had readers tell me the dialogue in my first book is completely natural and then at least one other reader say that people don’t talk the way my characters in my book did. Everything in one’s writing is subjective and dialogue is definitely so.
What are your thoughts writing dialogue? Do you feel that you have a solid grasp on the whole thing or is it something maybe you struggle with? I’d like to think I’m somewhere in the middle.