Monday, September 7, 2015

Writing Prompt: Dialogue

Dialogue can show the differences or similarities between characters. Your goal is to use the right words, emotion and even pauses to reflect a character's background, personality and relationship to the other characters in the scene. This isn't to say that you should rely on stereotypes, but rather your knowledge of that character's unique background, including regional affiliations, education, class, aspirations, politics, gender identification, sexuality, and more.

Nope, that's not easy to do in a short dialogue. And not all of those things will come out in every conversation. But your goal is to know your character so well that you could hint at various aspects of her personal history in a dialogue.

For today's prompt, write an inner monologue for a character. Set a timer for ten minutes and make sure you continue to write for the full ten minutes. You can use someone you are already creating in a piece of fiction or creative non-fiction. You might set that character in an extreme or calm situation. Maybe that character is looking out at the ocean's rising tide and thinking about a loss. Or maybe that character just got off of a crowded subway train, but her friend didn't. Let the character think to herself and go on any tangent that feels right. See what happens.

After the ten minutes are up, read through what you've written and underline any ideas or sentences that you could build on.

Happy writing!

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