HOW TO CRAFT DIALOGUE WITH MORE EMOTION, SPICE AND FLARE BEHIND THEMIntroduction
Well, I figured I'd make this guide as I've been working diligently to better improve the usage of dialogue in my post. If used with a bit of spice and balance? Dialogue can add quite the bit of flare to the post. However, as with all good things, too much use of it can be damaging and can kill a post given the context of the thread. So to help 'folks out with where to balance their dialogue -- I figured I'd make this thread! Said Is Dead -- to an Extent
I'm certain people have heard the former part of that title before, but let me say it in my words: SAID IS DEAD..but not entirely! There are many other words you can use in order to convey more emotion or action to a character's dialogue before having to resort to that. I'll demonstrate in the example given belowDemonstration: "And I said to him, you'll see him in a skirt when Hitler roams the earth again!"
He said while laughing.
As ridiculous as that sentence is, it can be enhanced so much more with a bit of "flare".Example
: "And I said to him, you'll see him in a skirt when Hitler roams the earth again!"
Cracking the air to life with laughter, the jovial and robust voice of the male echoed out to the walls around them.
As you can see, the second post has a bit more spice to it due to the fact I used more expressive wording to it. You can feel more emotion to the way he speaks in the example compared to the demonstration. It's also useful to describe the different tones of your characters voice. Chances are, if your character is speaking in a low tone, you might want to describe that their whispering.
I'd also like to note again that said isn't NECESSARILY dead
-- but you'll need to use a lot more than JUST that to have more "voice" behind your characters speech. I'll give more examples below."Have you seen my dog?"
He said in a whimpering whisper. "Have you seen my dog?"
Scorn filled behind every fiber of his voice, the male demanded to know where his companion was."Have you seen my dog?"
Asked the boy as his tone became more discouraged at the thought of losing his dog.
Ya getting my point? Each version gives the sentence a different flavor.Dialogue & Action
This is where I used to have problems and I am still working on fixing. Key memories that pierce like a bee's stinger is one incident where Ima described Cirno as giving long-winded speech, and another where JJ described Shadin as speaking too much during his thrash against Grimmjow. After reflecting back on my post, I felt I needed to make a change. And that change, I realized, is moderation.
To give an example of that? Chances are...if you are in the middle of a fight? Yea...you'll be hard pressed for words. I've seen incidents where people have given ENTIRE DEBATES in the span of one session of dialogue despite being engaged in combat. Therefore, you'll most likely want to intermix action and dialogue together. That, in my personal experience, is a better compromise.
To demonstrate? I'll give an example from an excerpt from one of my recent post.Illustration of Too Much Dialogue in One Section:"To unlock that which you yearn for, you must first understand the feelings within yourself. And I don't mean those mushy feelings you get inside when you say such sweet words as wanting to protect others. You need to fundamentally feel every aspect of yourself spiritually, mentally, physically. You must know your limit, understand your values and try to go beyond that and let your spirit guide you as a vessel hurling itself towards the destination of power you so seek. If you aren't willing to go above and beyond your comfort zone to learn the true origins of your soul, then you can forget about this whole conquest of protecting anything."
You see that? Your dialogue shouldn't be an entire paragraph by itself. It loses it's meaning, it's depth and emotion when it floods over like that. Unless your character is making some sort of speech, has room to speak THAT much or you are making some sort of lecture -- you should lower the amount of dialogue and fill it with more action, thoughts or changing in voice or tone. So I will display this below with the recent training battle Shadin was in:USAGE OF ACTION AND DIALOGUE IN A BALANCED MANNER WITH COMBAT"To unlock that which you yearn for, you must first understand the feelings within yourself."
Stomping his foot on the ground, the crying sound of Project Accelerator whirred out as he activated the collar fastened around his neck. "And I don't mean those mushy feelings you get inside when you say such sweet words as wanting to protect others."
Wasting no time with any sort of forewarning, all that roared throughout the void space around them was the booming sound of Shadin's speed going to work. The man was fast, immensely hard to detect and, briefly, even fell off the scope of detection as the cameras in the room had a difficult time processing such swift methods. The defying booms that came to be in the wake of such a power were delayed; being released many seconds after his actual movement. "You need to fundamentally feel every aspect of yourself spiritually, mentally, physically."
In a matter of moments, The Rabid Yuudeshi was already approaching the flank side of The Hacker's body. Letting out a hissing sound, each strike that the male attempted to inflict on Kaito's body came from his infamous cane: "Heavens Walker". Each strike released from this weapon was meant to combine the wealth of energy sealed both within it and it's master's cores; aiming to cause significant damage on an internal level. Working his way up in an ascending manner, The Yuudeshi aimed to hit his thighs first to immobilize him to an extent. Pressure and pain could be felt on his legs joints and muscles as the spiritually enriched strikes tore at all the skin, bones and tendons within. "You must know your limit, understand your values and try to go beyond that and let your spirit guide you as a vessel hurling itself towards the destination of power you so seek."
Even while he was speaking, the next strikes were then directed towards his midaxillary line all the way towards his lordotic curve. These were meant to compound on the blows dealt beforehand and cause serious nervous damage to be spread through injury done to his spinal cord. Like a circuit of pain, he'd more than likely notice the strain placed on his body if the full realization of these strikes came to be. Movement may be dulled or outright difficult or unable to take place. "If you aren't willing to go above and beyond your comfort zone to learn the true origins of your soul, then you can forget about this whole conquest of protecting anything."-END EXAMPLE-
So as you can tell from that bit above, those seemed more realistic given the context of being in mid-combat. I decided to break up what he had to say between actions in order to also impact the dialogue he did say. As, to me, the weight of a person's words get lessened once too many words fill up the dialogue. I'd recommend using 1-3 sentences per burst of dialogue; 4-5 in some rare instances. Additional Tips
When it comes to accents? I'd stick with a few choice words because it's very hard to read them. It's much simpler to stick with a choice set of words to express them. Such as with this Mana-based dialogue: ''Sugah, I'm nothing but a sweet thing!"
Speaking with obvious southern flare behind every word, the texan-like pitch of Mana's voice was cheery and upbeat as she eased in her chair. Conclusion
With that said, those are my general tips when it comes to making more expressive dialogue. Use them however you wish and hopefully it will assist with concocting your own unique style when it comes to posting.