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  1. Josh Hindman
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    Josh Hindman New Member

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    Too much dialogue

    Discussion in 'General Writing' started by Josh Hindman, Dec 30, 2011.

    Good evening,
    My name is Josh. I have been working on a fantasy novel and feel this forum can really help me overcome some blocking moments. I have never published but this year will be different.

    What are some tips on balancing dialogue with narration? I feel that my first chapter is just how I want it but my second chapter feels a little "play by play" to me, what are some tips on avoiding that?

    Thank you for any help you can provide
     
  2. AmsterdamAssassin
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    AmsterdamAssassin Contributing Member

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    Maybe you should forget about how your chapter feels and just continue writing the story. You can always edit the chapter later. Or, maybe, when you finished the story, the second chapter turns out not to be necessary anymore, and you'll remove it from the manuscript.
     
  3. mammamaia
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    mammamaia nit-picker-in-chief Contributor

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    there are no 'tips' or formulae... just write it as it comes and see if it works when you read it over... plus, study the best-written examples of the genre you're writing and see how the best writers do it...
     
  4. astroannie
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    astroannie Member

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    I'm new here too, but I attend a writer's group regularly.

    Maybe it's just that chapter. Maybe you're not describing what the characters are doing while they're talking. In either case, I've heard it's better to push on than polish early because you may have an idea later in the storywriting that necessitates some revision of earlier chapters anyway.

    Hope this is helpful.
     
  5. Kashif
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    Kashif New Member

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    I feel that it's easy to lose dialogue in fantasy novels especially if you're describing a new world. Some people prefer a lot of dialogue while others despise it. I think everyone's telling you to just go for it because you can't please every reader anyway. If you plan on editing later or getting an editor, you'll be able to evaluate the chapter properly.

    I normally write an excessive amount of dialogue, in my opinion. My editor actually encouraged me to go back and add more dialogue to describe the world and powers. You never know what'll work until you try it.
     
  6. Mjolnir
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    Mjolnir Member

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    I really feel that is a matter of personal style. Some authors use more dialogue, others lean more towards straight descriptions, and some have an equal mix of both. Although, I can that when writing dialogue make sure there's a point to it and that the characters aren't just rambling away about nothing, unless that's the point of the character. Dialogue should serve a purpose, whether it is to give clues to a characters personality, set a scene, foreshadow some future plot point, etc. Hope that helps some.
     
  7. minstrel
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    minstrel Leader of the Insquirrelgency Staff Supporter Contributor

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    Some stories require a lot of dialogue. Watch movies like courtroom dramas - there's always tons of talk. But then watch movies like some of the Coen Brothers films. They sometimes go quite a long time - five or ten minutes - without a word being said; the story, in those parts, is told entirely visually.

    So it depends on the kind of story you're writing, and the situations your characters are in. Sometimes they don't need to speak. One whole chapter of my first novel deals with one of my MCs going hunting all by himself, and he's the only character in the chapter, and he doesn't say a word. That chapter is about 8,000 words long in my first draft.

    On the other hand, I have another novel on the go in which my MC is in a rather desperate situation and needs somebody to help him, and he's talking all the time to nearly everybody he knows trying to get help out of his situation. There's a ton of dialogue in that story.
     

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