One of the fastest ways to pull your reader out of your book and back into reality is to write unrealistic dialogue. When a character says or does something that is “out of character” it always makes me flinch or wince. So I thought it’d be helpful to share some of things to remember when writing or editing dialogue in your books.
One of the easiest ways to be aware of good dialogue is to think about how you talk to your family and friends. Do you go into detailed backstory when chatting to people who know you really well? Do you rehash details everyone in the room is already aware of? How often do you call people by their first name when you’re chatting to them? Continue reading “Realistic Dialogue – Things to Remember About Your Characters and What They Say”
As a result of the heavy response to my post last month I contacted Goodreads. I sent them both the Indies Unlimited post and a formal request to add a coupon option to their giveaway contests. I received a response, friendly and professional, that GR is always looking to improve their programs. They thanked me for my e-mail, but did not commit to adding a coupon at this point. Since we have their attention, I encourage all IU readers who agree with my post to send an e-mail to Goodreads management in support of this marketing request. Let’s keep the ball rolling and achieve our objective—increased visibility and sales following a Goodreads Giveaway. And now, as I often do, I am about to make a sharp right turn.
This month’s post is about a subject that has been rolling around in my head for weeks. Do you know what umami is? I’ll bet it’s not what you think. Umami has nothing to do with beta readers or proper formatting. It is not a protective spell you chant to shield yourself from the latest publishing scam. It is not the name of a cutting-edge fashion designer from Japan. And whether or not you realize it, your story has a flavor profile that may or may not include umami. Continue reading “Does Your Story Have Umami?”
Ideally, dialogue in fiction is supposed to be a representation of how people actually speak. (Extracting the polite greetings and chitchat and such, unless that chitchat reveals story or character.) So how better to learn the way people actually speak than listen to them conversing with one another?
Before I get arrested as an accessory to violation of privacy, I’m not saying that you should put your ear up to walls (unless something particularly juicy is going on and you stand to make a few bucks selling the story to the tabloids) or hang out outside people’s domiciles with a shotgun mic. I’m talking about a little public eavesdropping. Don’t think you can pull it off without blushing, staring, urinary incontinence, or otherwise giving yourself away? Try some of my favorite Harriet The Spy eavesdropping tips: Continue reading “Eavesdrop Your Way To Better Dialogue”