This week: Grammar and DialectEdited by: jay
More Newsletters By This Editor
1. About this Newsletter
2. A Word from our Sponsor
3. Letter from the Editor
4. Editor's Picks
5. A Word from Writing.Com
6. Ask & Answer
7. Removal instructions
This Short Stories Newsletter is dedicated to readers and writers of short fiction and to those who want to know more about the art of telling big stories in small spaces.
Dialect is a powerful additive for dialogue. The way we say things, the inflection imparted to the words presented, are really relevant to our writing and help the reader to be absorbed in the world and understand. It's important to write the way we speak-- but better.
It's possible to take this in entirely the wrong direction, of course-- overusing misspellings or slang, it can make it hard for your readers to understand. Any spelling changes made should still hold to some kind of standardization-- certainly some slang terms like "gonna," "ain't," and the like are commonplace, and it's not unheard of to use contractions for letters that are skipped with certain accents. It's critical not to overdo it, though.
Another thing to watch for in written dialogue is to skip over the "filler" words-- those "um"s and "well"s and "huh"s. Tighten up conversations by bypassing these and getting straight to the good stuff. (That way, your reader knows that a pause or a momentary detour indicates a bit more gravity in the conversation.)
Something to consider in general when writing dialogue is to assess your word choices, since these as well will come to define your characters in the eyes of the reader. For example, is the main character the kind of person who would say: "Yep!" "Yes, sir." "You got it." "Yeah!" "Indeed." or some other variation to something with which they might agree?
Characters impart a lot of their personality through not only what they say, but how they say it, and paying attention to this shows more than most other methods can when it comes to defining traits.
Until next month,
Take care and Write on!
As promised-- The winners of this round of "The Dialogue 500" [18+] here for your perusal!
and a few more picks to round out the rosters:
Submit an item for consideration in this newsletter!
Have an opinion on what you've read here today? Then send the Editor feedback! Find an item that you think would be perfect for showcasing here? Submit it for consideration in the newsletter!
Don't forget to support our sponsor!
InstantPublisher.Com: Self publishing made easy and affordable. All file types accepted with many options. Starting at $100 for 25 copies in 7-10 days! Visit us today!
Feedback from last month's edition: "Digging Into Character with Questions..."
Ah! I just noticed that you highlighted my really short entry in last week's newsletter. Thank you :)
Your Dread game sounds like a lot of fun. I think I will have to suggest it at the next house party that a friend of mine has.
Anytime-- thank you for writing a great story!
An interesting double series, compelling me to drop a note of appreciation. Your suggestive approach is not only a terrific source of inspiration and development for the writer, but by virtue of establishing a sense of reality, one cannot help but capture a reader and pull them deeply into the story... keeping them alert in satisfaction of their own visions and questions. Well done.
Thanks very much! I definitely prefer to work with more of a guided character development than with a rubric or a list of required traits.
To stop receiving this newsletter, go into your account and remove the check from the box beside the specific topic. Be sure to click "Complete Edit" or it will not save your changes.