Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Writing Tip Wednesday #3

Looking over all my WIPs I know I have a problem. I love writing dialogue but I have to work on making everyone sound different! Most of my characters (so far) are similar in age and background but it's still important. I love to start a sentence with "well" for some reason. Do I do say that? Well, I don't think so!

Another problem I have is I walk around with my headphones on too much. But people talking on the bus annoy me! And listening to Cross My Heart by LFO is so much better. Okay, I'll try to be a better student of the world.

As for the writing tip, let's look at what Manuscript Makeover by Elizabeth Lyon has to say about improving dialogue.

Because dialogue is action, it also fulfills the maxim, "Show, don't tell." It is a showcase for characterization and captures personality and character voice like nothing else. Sharpen your dialogue, taking extra pains to delete unnecessary and extra verbiage. Make it lean and expressive at the same time.
I guess I have to really think about my characterization and what I want to bring out in the dialogue because that's just another way of getting to know the characters. I also think what I can work on is vary the sentence variety of different characters, like length and the way they put words together and the words they choose to use. I need to read the dialogue out loud to make sure that it doesn't sound awkward or stilted or just blaaaaaaaaaaaaaah.

Funny dialogue is the best!

Things to think about. Slow ride! Take it easy!


  1. Lyon's book is a great resource! Lots of good stuff in it. Reading your work out loud will definitely help. Good luck!

  2. The great thing about all those Wells is that you can do a search-and-find and take them all out when you're revising. Great for reducing word count, one word at a time....