Working with the voices in my head

All work, no play and all that...
I’m not crazy. I’m a writer.

When you’re writing out a scene, you probably visualize what’s happening in your mind. But how do you handle the dialogue?

Can you “hear” the characters?

There’s a big difference between reading what somebody’s saying, and actually saying it, or at least hearing it.

Which is why what the characters say is just as important as what we see them doing.

Case in point – I’m currently working on a pivotal scene in Act Three. Something the hero says must effectively convince the villain to do something, and those words really need to make an impact.

These lines have been rewritten at least maybe a dozen times, and may have to go through a dozen more until it feels right to me. Whatever it takes.

Among the many things to consider: Does it sound right? Does it sound natural (and not like “movie dialogue”?) Does it get the point across? Could a reader ‘feel’ the emotion in the text?  Is it too long?  Too short?  Too on-the-nose?  Is this something that character would say?

Give your dialogue a test run. Say the lines the way they’re meant to be said. Become the character and say it like they would.  Let your inner actor out.

But keep in mind your local Starbucks may not let you come back.

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