Answers to all of these questions and more can be found in Gloria Kempton's in-depth look at this crucial component of fiction. This is one book that will get readers talking! Additional Product Features Dewey Edition. Show More Show Less. Add to Cart. Any Condition Any Condition. See all People who bought this also bought. Nonfiction Books. No ratings or reviews yet. Be the first to write a review. Best Selling in Nonfiction See all.
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Writing Great Fiction: Storytelling Tips and Techniques
It's packed with innovative exercises and instruction designed to teach you how to:. Along with dozens of dialogue excerpts from today's most popular writers, Write Great Fiction: Dialogue gives you the edge you need to make your story stand out from the rest. Show sample text content. In this passage of dialogue, Adam receives a bit of new information that definitely moves the story forward, creating a crisis that could be a serious obstacle thwarting his goal to get his grandfather a reprieve from his scheduled execution.
He hadn't smiled yet. It was something I'd hoped never to test out. The words caused a fullness in me, and right at that moment an explosion of blackbirds lifted off the ground in a clearing a short distance away and filled up the whole sky. I said to myself, Will wonders never cease? I would add that to my list of careers. Fill pages as quickly as possible; double space, or write on every second line. Then calm down, and start worrying about the quality.
Do feel anxiety — it's the job.
See a Problem?
Own it, and see it. Dickens knew Bleak House was going to be called Bleak House before he started writing it. Don't go near the online bookies — unless it's research. Chances are the words that come into your head will do fine, eg "horse", "ran", "said". Wash the kitchen floor, hang out the washing. It's research.
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Good ideas are often murdered by better ones. I was working on a novel about a band called the Partitions. Then I decided to call them the Commitments. If it still doesn't work, throw it away. It's a nice feeling, and you don't want to be cluttered with the corpses of poems and stories which have everything in them except the life they need. That stuff is for agents and editors to fret over — or not.
Conversation with my American publisher. Me: "I'm writing a book so boring, of such limited commercial appeal, that if you publish it, it will probably cost you your job. In the early s I went to live in Paris. Since then I've developed an aversion to writing in public.
Dialogue by Gloria Kempton | Waterstones
I now think it should be done only in private, like any other lavatorial activity. The biggest regret of my writing life is that I have never kept a journal or a diary. If it's a choice between writing a book and doing nothing I will always choose the latter. It's only if I have an idea for two books that I choose one rather than the other.
Make a habit of putting your observations into words and gradually this will become instinct. This is the most important rule of all and, naturally, I don't follow it. If something is proving too difficult, give up and do something else. You've got to stick at it. Remember that all description is an opinion about the world. Find a place to stand. Fiction is made of words on a page; reality is made of something else. It doesn't matter how "real" your story is, or how "made up": what matters is its necessity. Why not? The thing that annoys this weeks-to-live self is the thing that is wrong with the book.
So change it. Stop arguing with yourself. Change it. And no one had to die. It just does. It may not improve your temper, but it fixes something else. It makes you more free. Substituting "then" is the lazy or tone-deaf writer's non-solution to the problem of too many "ands" on the page. I still blush when I come across it. Read it aloud to yourself. If it doesn't spin a bit of magic, it's missing something. Cut until you can cut no more.
What is left often springs into life. Don't let anything else interfere. Not everything needs to be explained. If you really know something, and breathe life into it, they'll know it too. Read it pretending you've never read it before. Show it to friends whose opinion you respect and who like the kind of thing that this is.
Related Dialogue: Techniques and Exercises for Crafting Effective Dialogue (Write Great Fiction Series)
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