Wednesday, January 9, 2013


Hey. Late post today. Apologies.

So, as writers, there's GOT to be that one thing we struggle with.

Whether it's finding time to write, actually getting words out of your head on paper, editing, character creations, world creation, not procrastinating, etc. The possibilities are endless.

What's mine?


I dislike writing dialogue. But I love how my characters interact. I don't know that the two are connected, but that seems a bit of a discrepancy to me.

I found out the other day, that when I don't have anything planned next... my characters talk about what they're going to do.

That just... it ends...

Well, here. I'll give you an example.

What I was writing yesterday. (It's from Mortality, if you are not familiar with the characters)

The vampire smirked slightly, looking out the window to where the sun was sinking below the horizon. “Would you believe it if I were to tell you I am older than the Elder’s of the school you protect? I had a deal with the previous Elder’s, actually. But that did not carry over, apart from my own promise that our kind, that is, those that I speak for, would not go near the school grounds.” 
Blade’s eyes narrowed. ‘But to find Devin-.’ 
“I broke that promise. I know. It was necessary. Without the girl, we cannot regain what we have lost.” 
‘How is she supposed to help? Why must it be she?’ 
Alucard shook his head. “I do now know that. But I know it must be her.” 
Blade huffed quietly. ‘Who are the Helyn?’ 
It was Alucard’s turn to be taken aback. “The Helyn? I… do not believe I have heard that name before. But it has the sound of a word from a long dead language. It used to be spoken by a peoples in the Kwiktilk Mountains. However, I cannot tell you without more context what it means.” 
“They are a group of people,” Damon explained from the door way. “Devin’s asleep,” he said by way of answering the questioning looks. 

Also, dialogue tags. When it's two men (okay, a wolf and a vampire, but both male) speaking, I can't use just 'he' and 'she', but if I use their names too often, it reads awkwardly. To me. I may be insane. That's a distinct possibility.

I showed a bit of that to a friend of mine, she says there is too much action to detract from the dialogue. But I think the action is fine, it gives the reader a clearer view of what is happening.

I can't point to what I don't like about my dialogue, but it feels awkward and clunky to me.

What're your thoughts?

Sidenote: I'm considering moving to Wordpress. Thoughts?


  1. Hey! Found your blog on Twitter. :-) I apologize in advance for the really long comment, but...forthcoming word vomit!

    As for a conversation with two people talking, tags are not at all necessary, even 'he' and 'she' tags.

    The problem might be with the words themselves -- I know nothing about your characters, but I'm not hearing their voices. I'm hearing what the author thinks they should be saying, so it doesn't seem natural. It reads more like thinly disguised exposition than dialogue.

    One thing you could try doing is just stripping away all the action (temporarily), and just write the dialogue. That way, you are forced to make each character's voice unique, so that the reader can tell who is speaking. I wish I knew a magic formula to tell you just how to do that, but I'm afraid I don't know.

    One thing that helps me is, I write the first thing that comes to mind, which is a mental summary of what needs to be said. Then I strike that out, and rewrite it. Then I strike it out again. Basically, I take away the obvious, and by the third time around, it starts to more nearly resemble how the character would really talk.

    Also, you could try stripping away any unnecessary clauses. Sometimes, just letting things be implied rather than stated outright helps it move the pace.

    Oh, and try reading it out loud. Sometimes that helps.

    Anyway, sorry again for the long comment. Hope something in here helped!

    1. You are forgiven for your long comment!

      And I'm glad you found my blog.

      To answer your points about their voices... that is very possible. This is probably one of the poorest examples of my dialogue.

      Though, I like to think, Damon has a well defined voice, he's been slipping lately, and Alucard is not as concrete in my mind as Damon. Blade... has been wishy-washy too. Maybe that's my problem, I need to get a good view of them.

      As for reading out loud, I often write in public or at work on my break with other people around... I can be rather- er, shy.

      Anyway! Thanks for reading! (And even more thanks for commenting! Been awhile since anyone has and I thought I was talking to myself. Not that that ever stops me.)



  2. I really don't like writing dialogue, when I do it's probably because I just wrote a 2 to 5K block and that I am looking for some way to make it lighter but the results are not great lol

  3. Dialogue is an ongoing battle; there's either too much or too little. I find that it's best to let it come, then go smooth it out later. And yes, having a conversation with several people involved (especially with same gender) is a headache. I find that names are often used a lot in this case. But putting 'movement' in my dialogue helps with this. I figure that my characters didn't stop everything they were doing to have this conversation. If they did, I mention that instead! (Which can be quite amusing, especially if something volatile was being worked on...).