Tag Archives: characterization

Practical Prompt 6/15/16: Dialogue Part 4

WriteOwls

WriteOwls

For our May “Learn to Write by Reading” challenge, we invited you to examine books that had great dialogue. Now, apply what you learned to your own manuscript.

Dialogue is a chance for characters to reveal themselves in their own words. Good dialogue often says more about the character speaking than the characters or events being discussed. Go back and re-read a dialogue scene from the book you read for this month’s challenge. Practice identifying ways the author used dialogue for characterization. Pick one technique to apply to a scene in your own story.

Practical Prompt 5/25/16: Dialogue Part 1

WriteOwls

WriteOwls

For our May “Learn to Write by Reading” challenge, we invited you to examine books that had great dialogue. Now, apply what you learned to your own manuscript.

Pick a scene from your story with a lot of dialogue. Copy and paste it into a new document and remove all the dialogue tags. Can you distinguish one character from the next? Does each character have a unique voice, or do they all sound like the same person?

If your characters sound too similar, stop and consider how each character’s story–where they’re from, how old they are, what their level of education is–might influence their speech. Then go back to the book you read for this month’s challenge and see how the author gave those characters their distinctive voices. Can you use similar techniques in your story?

Practical Prompt 1-21-15

WriteOwls

WriteOwls

You finally have a moment to write, but what to do with your limited time? Here’s a practical prompt to kickstart the story you’re working on right now. The clock is ticking, people. Start writing.

Consider the role of food in your story. You can use it to set a scene or provide characterization. What food does your character eat? What food does your character want to eat?

Plot Veer Epiphany

Stacey Kite

Stacey Kite

It’s been a struggle to keep my story on plot as I write my novel’s first draft, but I’ve finally figured out why things go wonky every few scenes: my characters aren’t following the script.

The culprit is usually a secondary character (different secondaries in different scenes). One character will say or do something that, though it makes total sense for that particular character in that particular situation, doesn’t quite work with the plot. Continue reading