Tuesday, September 21, 2010

One of the things that has always been a struggle for me is formatting dialog. After getting my first critique, covered in red, from my writing group I realized this was something that I definitely needed to work on. So to Google I went. I found a great website that explained the rules of formatting dialog. I'm still not an expert by any means but now I know a few of the rules.

Along with that at the writers conference Julie Wright from Precision Editing Group gave some more great advice on dialog. Always use conjunctions you're, you'll. That's how we talk so make sure your characters talk the same way. Another thing that I was doing was constantly putting in the name of who I was talking to example, "Tom, it is time to go to the store," he said. Better way of doing this, "It's time to go to the store." Generally when we talk to people we are not constantly stating their name. Julie also talked about the five things dialog is used for. 1. To move the plot forward. 2. Reveal Character (What things is the character willing to say or not say.) 3. Set the tone. 4. Alter relationships (Shows how the relationship is going between characters.) 5. Provides exposition and back story (*no info dumping*).

Julie also talked about the importance of not using As you know.... in dialog. "As you know we have to go home today and fight the dragon." If both know then they are not going to say it. Dialog tags are the things that follow dialog he said she said ect.. generally speaking just use he said she said when using other things like, he yelled at the man it only slows the reader down and takes them out of the moment. Make the dialog say what you want it to say without having to use dialog tags other than he said she said.

Well more on dialog later hope that everyone is having a good day and happy writing.

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