“I never had any doubts about my abilities. I knew I could write. I just had to figure out how to eat while doing this.”
I saw No Country for Old Men last night which might be why at 2 a.m. I am up blogging. I don’t like violent movies but the story was riveting and the dialogue incredible, I think I spent most of the movie covering my eyes and even though I thought I was prepared for the suspense, jumping out of my seat. The study of evil in any form is disturbing but McCarthy weaves stories around the violence that are mesmerizing. These are your friends and neighbors, simple people who have brought evil into their lives by making a series of bad decisions. I’m now reading the book wanting to pick up any bits of dialogue I might have missed.
There is definitely an art to writing engaging dialogue, the play with words could tell you everything or nothing. Today, work on the dialogue in your manuscript is it believable or flat? Engage the reader by using the right word, don’t settle for less. Now get back to work!
The Writing Nag
Yes! I was so affected by this movie. I’d been waiting for it to come around and saw it on opening night over here. I absolutely loved it – the dialogue, subtle clues, body language, musical score and the ending, too – fantastic. I make a habit out of observing others and as I stole glances of my fellow movie goers, I realized everyone was as captivated as I. It’s not easy to command your audience’s attention like that. I’m going to read the book, too, and see if the writer comes off the page like the movie lept off the screen.
Haven’t seen this movie yet. Am looking forward to it.
Dialogue discipline is important, particularly to any novelist. Fictional dialogue is different from everyday conversational dialogue. Imagine the transition I had to make, in going from 10% (or less) dialogue in my 55 non-fiction books, to 50% (plus) in my first novel.
It was an eye-popping experience. And, I believe a good exercise for all writers starting out:
write BOTH fiction and non-fiction.