My editing list today is dialogue.
Books need dialogue. But it's important to remember dialogue has a purpose!
1. To show character
2. To further action of plot
3. To illustrate the emotional state of the speaker
4. To convey information.
When it comes to editing makes sure you aren't repeating information in the dialogue. Does each of your characters have a particular way of speaking? Have you over done dialects or foreign accents? Have you gone OTT with a stutter?
Lastly, 'said.' It's the mark of the amateur to try and think of as many ways as possible to avoid using said. Most of the time readers don't even see it.
My lecturer, author Sara Grant suggests once you have finished your piece of writing highlighting a characters speech and then reading just the dialogue. That way you can check that your character doesn't change their voice half way through the novel.
Quick editing tip
Read your dialogue aloud. Unnatural lines may hide on the page, but they tend to leap out when spoken.
Listen to someone else read your dialogue aloud. How do the lines sound? How do they feel to the speakers?
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