When you read your story, does it sound off, maybe you can’t quite put your finger on it, but you know you’ve done something wrong? Sometimes–maybe even lots of times–there are simple fixes. These writer’s tips will come at you once a week, giving you plenty of time to go through your story and make the adjustments.
Today’s tip: Use dialogue for character development; put exposition and story details into action scenes
There are a lot of rights and wrongs of dialogue. This one you might not have been aware of. It’s from Screenwriting U, but fits us fiction writers as well.
Beginning writers often fill their dialogue with exposition and story details, thus reducing the amount of character and creativity that shows up in that dialogue. Don’t do it.
Instead, put the exposition, information, and story details into the action and situations.
For example, instead of a trainer telling a new boxer that a certain philosophy doesn’t work, have him put the character in the boxing ring and learn it by having his ass kicked. Now, the trainer doesn’t have to lecture. In fact, he is free to talk about anything – breakfast, politics, his favorite dog, etc. – because the real meaning is being delivered through the action.
Please add comments with your favorite editing fixes.
To have these tips delivered to your email, click Writer’s Tips here.