Writing blog -- cont. by MLR

Back from vacation.

I've been attempting this thing, with dialogue, wherein if two animal-people are talking to each other, and both belong to a species that has a very sensitive nose, I try to work that aspect of their lives into the dialogue. Essentially this means a lot of things go unsaid, at least in terms of words spoken.

So the attempt was to make dialogue that was very choppy and often hard to follow unless you think about that aspect of it. Is this a good thing or a bad thing, I don't know (nor do I particularly care... someone besides me will find it amusing, surely), but in going back and re-reading some of it the other day I do at least know that I succeeded. By this I mean it took me a while to remember what the hell was actually being said during the conversation, even though I wrote it.

Writing dialogue that way does take an awful long time, of course, since I have to stop every so often and think about all the other stuff going on behind the scenes, and decide what words to include and what words not to. But at the same time, it's a great relief when I allow humans (or related species) to enter the conversation, because then I can just write it all naturally again (at least the words coming from them; the other species still has to think about how to communicate with someone who doesn't get all the subtle scents and things and has different body language). Just recently I used this as a device; one of the characters is not real bright, so the conversation involving this character reflects that in how vastly more simplified and obvious it is than the rest of the dialogue in the book.

These are the things that keep this fun for me. I'm probably never, ever going to sell this book. ;-)

Writing blog -- cont.

MLR

11 August 2015 at 07:07:39 MDT

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  • Link

    I'm not sure how you'd make it work, but it's a fascinating concept.

    • Link

      So far it's been requiring a few iterations. Like, I'm still debating how much I want to/should explain outside of the dialogue itself. I'm finding there's a way to do it that makes what's being said almost completely impenetrable, but that's obviously going a bit too far. I mean, at some level you could imagine two dogs having a whole conversation just through wrinkling of noses and moving of ears and tails (like real dogs), but it also might be that that level of abstraction is too much, depending on how you write it.

      So how's everything with you?

      • Link

        Well, I resigned from my job of 14 years as an electrician, moved from California to Texas to start a new life and a new career. Unfortunately, my mom passed away a week before I left California which was very hard. The job hasn't worked out as well as I would like too and I've made the decision to walk away from it and seek other employment. I've been going to counseling as I work through the grieving process, not to mention some depression and anxiety from some things that happened in California and probably so much change all at one time. But I enjoy being in Texas. I have some good friends here and now I just need to find a satisfying job.

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          Very sorry to hear about your mom. I remember she'd been going through some rough patches. I do hope everything works out okay for you; I never like hearing about bad things happening to great people.