Tips for writing realistic dialogue

From Rick: Why is dialog important? In the past I’ve done several posts on dialogue, and you can find them under DIALOGUE in the categories list. There are five narrative modes in fiction (Description, Exposition, Dialogue, Thoughts, Action), and of

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Character thoughts: When to italicize them

From Rick: In my June 1, 2020 post I talked about how to deal with character thoughts, specifically inner (direct) thoughts. I also talked about indirect thoughts. In a novel I’m currently editing, I noticed some places where the author

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Compound word nightmares: open, closed, or hyphenated?

From Rick: I don’t know about you, but as a writer and an editor, I’m constantly beset with problems when dealing with compound words: should it be one word, two words, or a hyphenated word? We all know that “bedroom”

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Overwritten manuscripts: how to fix—PART 2

From Rick: Last time, I pointed out several ways in which writers overwrite their stories and novels: —unnecessary dialogue tags —wordiness in general —unnecessary repetition of information To that list I want to add: —unnecessary use of characters’ names —repeated

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