Make your dialogue sound natural. I have heard, and followed, this advice for a long time now, but I have recently struggled with the question: how real? Where I get stuck up is in writing sentences such as: "What's gonna happen?" versus "What's going to happen?"; or "Lookin' good, man" versus "Looking good, man" Now, obviously these aren't huge differences and they're not something that would make a reader put down the book for good (in my opinion), but is there a too realistic? I understand that most of it is stylistic preference, but, like the use of profanities in (for example) a college setting, is there a limit to realistic dialogue?