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Saturday, February 7, 2009

How To Bring Characters To Life


Have a question? Agree, disagree, with
me? Leave me your opinion.

Characters, after all the other
ingredients have been added,
bring the story to life. You bring
characters to life through dialogue.

"How do I learn to write dialogue?"
You asked.

There are books available on dialogue,
but I learned more from listening to
people talk.

Go to the mall, any place of business,
and listen to people. For that matter,
keep an ear open to family members,
co-workers, people on public
transportation, or children at play.
You'll be surprised at how people
pronounce common words.

Let's look at various words.

1. Your
--yer
--ya're

2. With
--wit

3. That
--dat

4. Around
--round

5. You
--ya

6. Not
--ain't

7. No
--nah
--naw
--nope

The speech pattern is decided
when you're making the character
profile.

The profiles include height,
weight, educational level, quirks,
origin, beliefs, dreams, and
anything else you want to put in
it.

The profile helps you to know
your character. The better
you know him/her, the easier
it is to write the dialogue,
story.

Let's look at my character,
Delores Young, from the hood.
She is from Any-City, USA.
She's street smart, managed to
graduate twelfth grade, and was
given a job at the local mall.
She has worked at the store for
a year.

"Hey, Dee-Lo." Joy spoke as
Delores passed her on the way
home.

"Hey."

"Ya're goin' to Molly's party?"

"Nah, wasn't invited." Delores
stopped walking.

"Go wit me, no thang." Joy's
eyes swept across the ground.
"There's somethin' I gotta tell
ya."

Now, there are many interesting
paths to take in finishing the
story. What are your ideas about
it?

Dialogue gives characters life-
like presence, and moves the
story along. Dialogue should
pull readers into the story.

Allow dialogue to show who characters
are, and what they are up to. Profile
information is given through dialogue.
A tid-bit of profile information is
shared at a time. In other words,
profile information is disclosed
sparingly.

Dialogue takes the place of
writing paragraphs of description.

Dialogue puts the reader in your
story. He/she hears what's
going on. It's more interesting
than reading tons of information
from the author.

Bring characters to life by using
dialogue that mimics human
speech. Use profiles to make
characters interesting.

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About Me

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Marcella Glenn is a freelance writer who has written news reports, worked in an office, reviewed movies, published a newsletter and had her novel, "Grave Street House," published. She, too, is a Writing Consultant as well as a Personal Coach.


She has tried to go down some of life's other paths. A few paths were a mail-order business, the publishing of a pen-pal newsletter and selling plastic-ware. Only, she was back writing before realizing what she was doing.


She'd critique titles, paragraphs, news reports, that no one submitted to her. She'd stop herself, eventually. Marcella Glenn seemed to be enjoying the act of writing. This is how she knew writing was more than a hobby.


Let it be a lesson in your life too. Is writing calling your name? Or, acting? Teaching? Are you interested in engineering? Have the courage to go for your dreams. Simply, believe in yourself.


Meet Marcella Glenn on Twitter: http://twitter.com/marcellaglenn.



Grave Street House Interview
Authors Show Radio Announces Interview Lineup For Week Of February 16, 2009
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Internet Radio features five new authors each week
February 16, 2009
Every week, The Authors Show, radio version features interviews with up and coming authors from around the world. This week The Authors Show radio features Marcella Glenn, author of  'Grave Street House'.

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