Dialog this good

30 December 2004

…should be illegal

Have you ever come across a really good piece of online writing? Not just something that’s an “I aught to post this to my del.icio.us account” piece of writing, but something that’s really good.

Something that makes you want to lick your computer screen.

“Talk dirty”, by Gina Trapani, is one of those somethings.

I like the fact that the dialog’s natural. It reads as if it’s two people speaking, yet it’s minus all the little filler words, “um”, “yeah”, “like”, etc. that we use in day-to-day conversation. Still, there’s enough pausing, single word exclamations, and slang words that it sounds realistic.

“‘Bold!’”

“‘Did you…?’”

“‘Yup. Four times now.’ The waitress set down two plates, heaped high with sandwiches and fries.”

Sentences like that last one, where the dialog carries into the action, add to that sense of real. Conversation isn’t a static fixed thing. It flows. The world moves around it. I admire people who have the linguistic skill necessary to capture something like that.

Needless to say, the rest of Scribbling.net is worth reading, and I’ve spent the better part of an hour doing just that. It was delightful.

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