Writer’s Wisdom: Bookism: The Silent Threat to Good Writing

When creating fiction, writers inevitable learn to write dialogue. Supposedly a novel somewhere exists that doesn’t have dialogue, but has anyone seen it? The key to good dialogue is attributing the spoken words to the proper character, so readers instantly know who is saying them.

We do this by using dialogue tags: “The last time I heard this song by Charlie Rich,” Liam said, “you were young, adventurous and in love with me.”

The words Liam said is a direct dialogue tag. It tells the reader without fuss or doubt that Liam said those words inside those quotation marks.

Another method of informing readers of who said what is through an action by the character. This is technically not called a dialogue tag, but it does the same job.

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Writer’s Wisdom: Connect to the genius in the wall.

Author Elizabeth Gilbert has excellent advice for writers who are looking for success and those who have already found it. Her book, Eat, Pray, Love, was a great success, and that left many asking her what was next? Could she write a more successful book, or was this the pinnacle of her career?

As she explains in her Ted Talk, Your elusive creative genius, she had a choice to make. She could say she’d reached the top as an author and enter another profession, or she could experience writing differently.

She chose to re-evaluate her writing career and along the way, she learned the history of the writing genius in the wall.