The Mechanics of Dialogue

1 - Labeling Your Dialogue

Argument at the Council of Elrond Writers use labels, known as dialogue tags, to tell their readers which character is speaking. Many writers think dialogue tags are part of their story’s narration. That’s a mistake. Tags aren’t narration; they’re a technical necessity like punctuation, font, and quotes. We don’t want readers … read more »

2 - Shaping the Sound of Your Dialogue

What you write between double quotes isn’t just ideas on a page; it’s notation for vocal sounds. Thinking of dialogue as sound will help you shape the voices of your characters and communicate their tone to readers.

3 - Pacing Your Dialogue

Dialogue is like music; rhythm flows from its notes and pauses. By shaping the pace of your dialogue, you can make this rhythm more engaging. Plus, those annoying tags become less noticeable when you’re not hitting the same beat every time.