Monday, September 12, 2016

Rachael Thomas and The Art of Dialogue

Please welcome Rachael Thomas back to the block today!
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The Art of Dialogue 

Well written dialogue will move your story forwards, allow the reader to really get to know the characters and allow you, the writer to show instead of telling. It also makes for a more attractive page within a book, one which isn’t a solid block of text and therefore more appealing to the reader. 

How to ensure your dialogue works hard in your story: 

  • There is no need to include all the normal everyday parts of dialogue. Take your reader straight to what matters and leave out things like hello or goodbye. You also don’t need every umm to make the conversation sound realistic. 
  • Use dialogue to show your character. Every time your character says something the words they chose and the way in which they speak will bring life to your character and enable the reader to get to know them. 
  • The use of dialogue tags, like he or she said, isn’t always necessary, but ensure it’s clear just who is talking. There is nothing worse than having to scan back up a page to work out just who is talking.  
  • Take care when you have more than two characters involved in a conversation. Use some dialogue tags and you do not always have to ensure each character takes their turn.  
  • Use your scene. Build in what’s happening around the characters and what actions they make as they talk. Make it a living breathing discussion instead of constant to and fro. When you want what is said to really stand out and make an impact use only the words the character said. 
  • Different characters will use different words. An old lady would not sound the same as a teenage girl. Think about your characters and how they would speak. Make each one unique and recognisable to the reader. 
  • Ensure your dialogue moves the story forward. It should reveal your character, show their emotion to the reader so chose your words carefully. Make each one count. 
  • Don’t allow a character to use long rambling speeches. Break their dialogue up with internal thoughts or actions going on around them or another character’s dialogue. 
  • Finally, read your dialogue out loud. Did it sound natural and flowing to read out? If not, think of how it can be changed, then read it again. 

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I love escaping to distant shores with my characters, entering their glamorous world and feeling all the emotions they experience as they discover their love for one another. A love so strong it will overcome all obstacles eventually, leading to that promised happy ever after.
Connect with Rachael Thomas on the web:
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TO BLACKMAIL A DI SIONE

"When you've finished making offers for the bracelet, I have a proposition for you." 
Billionaire Liev Dragunov has spent a lifetime plotting revenge against those responsible for his family's ruin. Finally he has the way: Bianca Di Sione. 
She's denied their obvious attraction and coolly rebuffs every request to work for him—until he finds her weakness: a diamond bracelet she desperately needs! 
Bianca must become his fake fiancée if she wants her trinket! But the taste of revenge isn't as sweet as desire, and Liev discovers that she is innocent in more ways than one… 
Book 3 of The Billionaire's Legacy


Buy Links

Harlequin US      M&B UK        M&B Aust
B&N        iBooks

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Thanks Rachael! I love both reading and writing dialogue and these are excellent tips! 

How about you? Are you a fan of writing dialogue? Do you read aloud and does your family think you're nuts (or is that just me???)?



41 comments:

  1. Dialogue is always my favorite part of a story, as a reader and writer. Great tips here!

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  2. Reading it out loud is really important. That's why it's been so cool hearing my books on audio - I can hear where I did really well with the dialogue and character.

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    1. It really is Alex and a great reason to listen to your own books on audio!

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  3. If the dialogue falls flat, then the story doesn't hold my attention. Great tips, Rachael.

    Hi, Jemi! :)

    Thoughts in Progress
    and MC Book Tours

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  4. Dialogue is my favorite part. And yes, my husband thinks I'm nuts when I read aloud.

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  5. "Different characters will use different words.... Make each one unique and recognisable to the reader." Still need to improve at this one. Great post! Christy

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  6. Thanks to my crit partner's constant dinging of my dialogue, I'm becoming much better at it. Since I tend not to talk much, dialogue doesn't come easy to me.

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    1. That's exactly what a crit partner is for. Thanks for stopping by.

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  7. Great tips. Reading dialogue is definitely my favourite - my first drafts are always so stilted, a I realise no one talks the way I've just written it!

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    1. But you can polish up that first draft and get your characters talking more naturally. Thanks Annalisa.

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  8. Excellent tips on dialog usage. Thanks for sharing!

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  9. Since I come from the land of playwriting, writing dialogue is dessert to me. Yummy. Thanks for the super tips. Great checklist.

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    1. Thanks Leslie. I love that dialogue is dessert!

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  10. Hi, Rachel! Unique dialog can be such a trick, and yet I really feel it's all about getting inside the character's head and BEING the character. You can spend a whole week just trying to see through one character and really secure a unique dialect. But enough about that. This is an awesome list!

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    1. Great tip Crystal - and the only way to really make dialogue unique to a character. Thanks!

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  11. Hi Rachael & Jemi!

    Thanks for this awesome post and great checklist!

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  12. I always enjoy writing dialogue the best. Thanks so much for the great advice.

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  13. Great tips on writing dialogue.
    Congratulations on the release of your latest book Rachael!

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  14. Hi Jemi! Hi Rachael! Thanks for this. You can never know too much about dialogue!

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  15. This is great advice and so helpful, Rachael. I always like to be reminded of dialogue dos and don'ts (plus, I like learning new things). :)
    ~Jess

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    1. Thanks Jess. I like learning new things too!

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  16. Dialogue is one of my favourite aspects. I think we learn the most about characters via dialogue. I love writing dialogue.
    Thanks for the tips!

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    1. Exactly. I love that the characters reveal themselves through what they so - or even what they don't say!

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  17. Good tips, especially reading out loud. I try to sound like my characters so I can hear what doesn't work.

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  18. Great advice! Dialogue has always been one of my favorite things to write and read. You can learn so much about a character through it!

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  19. Some writers are so good at dialogue. I always study what they've done that makes it so good.

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  20. If the dialogue isn't good, I can't get into a story. That's the immediate scene and the intriguing character revealing who he or she is. Making it good is essential. Thanks for this. Great post.

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  21. Excellent advice! Nice to meet you here on Jemi's blog. :-)

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  22. Great advice. Dialogues with multiple characters can be tricky.

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  23. Ha ha! I read dialogue out loud all the time, and my family is used to it. I've worked on improving my dialogue almost as much as anything, and I think it has paid off.

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