Thursday, May 25, 2006


Dialogue is an essential part of every fiction story, therefore all writers should learn how to transform an ordinary conversation into a worthwhile read.

Take the example of the following transcripts. The original transcript is derived from an ordinary conversation between two persons who met each other in a shopping mall. There is nothing unusual about the conversation, but if written as is in a story, may be seen as boring.

'Eh, hi, what brings you here?'
'Oh, I'm just running some errands here.'
'I see. Have you eaten?'
'Nope. Not yet.'
'Shall we have lunch together then?'
'Okay, but it will have to be somewhere near.'
'Sure, no problem. Let's go.'

The revised transcript, on the other hand, has been modified to include gestures, tones, and narratives to make the story more interesting and a worthwhile read.

It was lunchtime, and there were many people at the shopping mall. Nancy was about to go to a restaurant, when she saw David, her ex-colleague from Banque Nationale de Paris.

'Eh, hi, what brings you here?' David greeted Nancy in a sweet and sensuous voice.
'Oh, I'm just running some errands,' Nancy responded with a forced smile, her gesture revealing a reluctance to elaborate any further.
'I see. Have you eaten?' David asked.
'No, not really.'
'Shall we have lunch together then?' David continued, his tone mellowing to a beg, his face expressing hopefulness and longing.
'Well, alright, but it will have to be somewhere near,' Nancy replied in a relenting tone, feeling sorry for David who has been asking her out on a date for a very long time.
'Sure,' David brightened up immediately. 'Let's go.'

From the two transcripts above, it can be seen that by adding narrative to the dialogue, an ordinary conversation can be streamlined towards building up the climate for the story plot. This is done by painting in details the picture of what is not ordinary about the situation.