This is Class 6 of the CWN free writing classes in fiction. (If you're not signed up for these online creative writing classes, consider yourself invited. They're free! Click here to get started.)
Free Writing Courses - Class 6
Topic: Writing Dialogue
Hello there! Today's class is about writing dialogue that will express your character's unique voice.
10-minute writing assignment - Do this after reading the lesson.
One character is trying to convince the other not to run away from home. This might be a parent convincing a child, a husband convincing a wife, an adult son or daughter convincing an elderly parent. Write the conversation.
Optional homework assignment:
Get permission from friends or family to set up a recording device in the room while they're chatting (you could use an old-fashioned tape recorder, or check if your cell phone has a recording function). People might be self-conscious at first, but keep recording long enough that they forget the device is there. Afterward, transcribe part of the recording. Write down exactly what you hear, word for word. Read what you've written, and analyze the differences in the speaking styles and patterns of the different people in the room. What defines each person's unique voice? How can you recognize it on the page? What does the way each person speaks reveal about his or her personality? Then take a small part of the conversation and write a story around it. Remember to edit and clean up the dialogue as necessary.
Today's reading - After completing the reading, return here to do the 10-minute writing assignment:
Very nice work!
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