6 Types Of Conversations Your Characters Can Have

Of course there are more than 6 types of conversations your characters can have, but this is just to name a few. Our characters speak all the time to each other and we don’t really think too much about what the conversation entails or how it may effect the readers.

6 types of conversations characters can have | dialogue tips | creative writing | RachelPoli.com

Hellos & Goodbyes

This conversation is pretty straightforward. It’s an introduction or a see you later kind of conversation. Sometimes it’s quick, sometimes not. Sometimes it’s easy to say hi and bye and other times it’s hard for the characters. It’s a generic conversation but this can go in many different ways.

General

General conversations can be natural little quips here and there. It can be something as simple as two characters commenting on the weather. This kind of conversation can shed some light on the characters themselves as well as the setting and maybe some slight plot information.

Backstory

This type of conversation can be used to showcase a character or two. Your readers can get to know them a little more as your characters try to get to know each other. This can also be important to the plot as the conversation can very well just be about the plot instead of themselves.

Agreement & Disagreement

No one gets along with others all the time. Arguments and bickers happen. It’s a little depth to the characters and to the plot, depending on what the argument is about. But there are also plenty of agreements to go around, especially if your characters are trying to come up with a plan to do something. They can come up with ideas together.

Complaining

I feel like I shouldn’t have to explain this one. We all complain and it usually gets on someone’s nerves. Or maybe that someone agrees with us and may be complaining right along side us. Characters have a lot to complain about, especially with the types of situations we writers put them through.

Reveal

Revealing something important or making a confession, your characters can have a sort of heart-to-heart. Unless it’s something pretty big then maybe an argument will break out. Who knows what’ll happen?

There are a lot of other types of conversations characters can have. Which ones did I miss? Let me know in the comments below. If you liked this post, please share it around.

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Time To Write: Only Dialogue [Creative Writing Prompt]

Last week’s writing prompt was a set the scene prompt. Check out some great pieces by fellow writers:

Now onto this week’s writing prompt:

Creative Writing Prompt | Only Dialogue | Flash Fiction | RachelPoli.com

Write a story using only dialogue.

If you use this prompt, please leave a link to your post in the comments below and I’ll share it next week. Please be sure to link back to my blog so your readers know where you got the prompt!

Happy Writing! If you want more, check out all my other Writing Prompts here!

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How Do You Write Internal Dialogue?

Internal dialogue can be more confusing than one would think. I don’t believe there’s a “right” way or “wrong” way to write internal dialogue, but I’ve seen plenty of people write it in different ways. I’ll admit, I have a preference, but that’s just my opinion.

How do you write internal dialogue | Creative Writing | Writing Tips | Dialogue tips | RachelPoli.com

There are different forms of internal dialogue – direct and indirect.

Direct Internal Dialogue

Direct refers to a character thinking to themselves in first person. This means these are thoughts they’re actually thinking, not thoughts we believe – or the narrator is telling us – they’re thinking. This can be written in two ways: using quotations or italics.

Using quotations makes it seem like the character is speaking aloud. It’s up to the dialogue tag to show that the character is actually thinking instead of speaking.

Using italics without quotations, but still using dialogue tags, makes it easy to differentiate between thoughts and speaking. Both are fine ways to write internal dialogue, but I prefer the italics. I find it easier to read and follow along.

Indirect Internal Dialogue

Similar to direct internal dialogue except it’s written in third person. This also means the narrator is telling us what a character is wondering, or may be wondering. So it’s not the exact thoughts from the character but we have an idea of what they may be thinking.

How do you typically write internal dialogue? Do you like using quotations or italics? Let me know in the comments below. If you liked this post, please share it around.

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How To Format Dialogue

Dialogue is how we as writers show our characters talking. It’s a fairly simple concept, but formatting it isn’t always easy or straightforward. So, here’s how to format dialogue.

How To Format Dialogue | Creative Writing | Writing Tips | RachelPoli.com

Quotation Marks

Yeah, this is a given. Most dialogue is enclosed with quotation marks at the beginning and at the end of your character’s words. I’ve seen some stories where people don’t use quotations at all. I’m not sure if that depends based on where you are in the world or if that’s just a personal format choice from the author.

Quote Within Dialogue

A quote within a dialogue, or a character quoting someone else, is showed with single quotation marks around it.

Punctuation

Punctuation is tricky. I’ve seen people add it on the outside of the quotations, but it’s supposed to go inside the quotations. The punctuation is part of the sentence and the quotations is just like a cover of the sentence, so it doesn’t make sense for the period or question mark to be on the outside.

Actions

If the character is performing some sort of action before or after the dialogue, it goes in a separate sentence. However, if the character is doing it during the dialogue, their action is separated from the dialogue with a comma. If there is an action interrupting or in the middle of the dialogue, the next part of the dialogue starts with a lowercase letter.

New Paragraphs

We all know a new paragraph is indented as is when a new character speaks. It’s a new paragraph and is indented. When a character is speaking so much and a new paragraph is needed in the middle of it, there is no ending quotation. The next paragraph begins with a quotation and ends with one as well. It’s a continuation.

This is all common sense to people who have been writing for a while. Yet, we still sometimes make mistakes and some things are not always clear. Dialogue seems so simple and yet, look at the “rules” that go along with it.

Did I miss anything? Let me know in the comments below. If you liked this post, please share it around.

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Short Story Sunday #12

Prompt — Dialogue, Little Description
Goal: 500-800 Words

“Did you see that? Did you just see what happened?” Aaron clapped his hands together with excitement.

“Uh-huh,” Chloe nodded her head while looking at her Seventeen magazine.

“You’re not even looking. How did you see it?” Aaron pouted placing his hands on his hips.

“I glanced up.” Chloe shrugged still not looking up from her magazine.

“I highly doubt that. You know, this is a pretty exciting project. I’m sure you’d enjoy it if you watched. You’d probably also learn a lot, too. You might even get some good grades in the class.” Aaron rolled his eyes with annoyance.

“I don’t like science, Aaron. I never have and I never will. I’ve never been good at it, either. That’s why you’re doing the project and I’m staying out of your way so you can do a good job for both of us.” Chloe flipped to the next page in her periodical.

“You do realize that Mr. Wilson said that he was giving us each individual grades, right? Just because you and I are partners on this project doesn’t mean we’re going to get the same grade. You evaluate me and I’ll evaluate you on the day the project is due.” Aaron smirked as he folded his hands across his chest. “I can rat you out and tell Mr. Wilson that all you did was read your magazine while I worked very hard on my project.”

“You know, I could do the same to you, too.” Chloe sneered finally looking Aaron in the face.

“You could,” Aaron agreed. “But I have an A in that class. You never do your homework, you rarely show up for class and when you do you’re always late, you never pay attention in class and never take notes. Do you really think Mr. Wilson is going to believe you when you say you did all the work—an A+-worthy project, by the way—and that I stood by and did nothing?”

“Fine,” Chloe growled slapping her magazine down hard on Aaron’s kitchen counter. “Just what is it that you want me to do?”

“I want you to help me. Like I said, you might learn something and you might even like it.” Aaron smiled trying to sincerely be friendly.

“I highly doubt that.” Chloe popped a bubble with her gum.

“Here, do this.” Aaron took Chloe by the hands and showed her exactly what to do on the project.

“Like this?” she asked.

“Yeah, just like that.” Aaron nodded. “Now you’re going to hold the red wire on the tin foil and hold the blue wire over here.

“So like this?” Chloe accidentally tangled up the wires.

“Uh, no,” Aaron sighed waving her hands away. “Let me fix it. Hold on.”

“Okay, but hurry. My show is going to be on soon and it’s a new episode. So I need to go home soon.” Chloe placed her hands on her hips impatiently.

“We would have been done with this a long time ago and you would have been home already if you had just helped me in the first place. Now give me your hands again.” Aaron grabbed both Chloe’s arms.

“Ouch!” Chloe screamed as the wires shocked her. “That hurt! What was that for?”

“I didn’t do that, you did.” Aaron sighed. “You put the wires in the wrong spots and…great. Now you short-circuited it.”

“Wait, I think I can fix it!” Chloe enthusiastically reached for both the wires again.

“You don’t know how.” Aaron batted her hands away. “You know what? Why don’t you just go home? I’ll finish the project myself. I didn’t realize that you were going to be more work than the actual project.”

“Really? You mean it?” Chloe seemed surprised.

“Yes,”

“What about the evaluation with Mr. Wilson?”

“I’ll be sure to tell him that you really tried your best.” Aaron sheepishly smiled.

Words: 645