Tag Archives: dialogue

3D Dialogue with Action Tags and Beats

Creating rich dialogue requires a variety of tools. Action tags and beats turn dialogue from a flat exchange into a multi-sensory experience. They incorporate the wide range of human communication by allowing for nonverbal cues, sensory detail, and indirect characterization during a verbal exchange. Action Tags Often defining a tool is easier when you point out its context. An action tag belongs to the tool group of dialogue tags. Dialogue tags are used to supply necessary information about the line

Dialogue and Subtext: What Isn’t Said

Dialogue, as any other narrative tool, operates best when it advances more than one goal. Single-purpose narrative devices often come off flat, lacking color, or uninteresting. Screenwriters call this “on-the-nose” dialogue, and if any writers know the power of well-crafted character speech, it’s those who hang their whole project on the spoken word! Subtext Subtext is everything the dialogue says that is not spoken. Every element of dialogue should be viewed as a tool to insert as much important information

Dialogue Tools or Toys?

Writers play with language. This is definitely a kind of game. However, the same way someone doesn’t use chess pieces to play checkers, certain devices are couched in cultural conventions. While not “rules” exactly, these conventions serve to ensure written work is understood by the largest possible readership. Of course, everyone breaks these conventions just to see if they can, and the following three “toys” of dialogue are a tempting playground. Most new authors experiment with these, but it’s worth

Breaking the Script

People go through much of their lives on autopilot, and the programming for everyday life is in social scripts. These ever-present outlines for action are present in story too, though they make up the unwritten world between the lines of the narrative. These expected, and often overlooked, patterns of behavior enlighten creative work when this tool is explored and used to experiment. Consider the scripts observed by social scientists as the strongest weapon of subtle tone control. Definition/Theory Social scripts