To War Against the Dialogue Tags!I am waging a war. Consider this your invitation to join my army.To War Against the Dialogue Tags!3 years ago in Writing More Like This
What is this war about, you ask? It's about destroying dialogue tags. What are dialogue tags, you ask? They are the parts that explain who's talking, like "he said" and "she asked". Why am I doing this, you ask? It's not that they kicked my puppy (I don't even have one, despite the opposition's claim). It's not that they burned my toast. It's not even that they opened my favorite book too far and creased the spine. Here. Let me explain why you're going to be fighting the good fight.
Dialogue tags have a use. It's a very useful use, even. They prevent confusion about who generated what dialogue. So why am I up in arms about them? Simple. They take up space and often are unnecessary.
There will come a time in your career, if you pursue your writing, when you will have to pay close attention to word count. Dialogue tags are used so often that they eat into your precious word total something fierce. So what can be done? Read
The Chronology of StorytellingImagine you're reading to a live audience. It can be as big or small as you'd like. It can be your writing or someone else's. It doesn't matter. Indulge yourself in the fantasy. So you're reading to a live audience. They're enraptured. They're engrossed. They're generating a movie in their heads as you weave your tale. Imagine how important every word you produce is to these movies. Every detail you provide adds another layer. They smell the flowers. They feel the roughness of the brick. They see the vivid colors of the clothes.The Chronology of Storytelling3 years ago in Writing More Like This
And then you require they perform time travel to make the movies accurate.
The chronology, or order of events, in a story is something I've been focusing on a lot in my writing lately. I'm not just talking about the overall chronology. There's obviously a beginning, middle, and end to a story. You progress from one event to the next. Things happen in chronological order. That's how, y'know, stories make sense. That's also