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Break All The Rules In Dialogue (1 Viewer)

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WF Veterans
I was talking to someone, and . . . I decided to insert an ellipsis into the middle of my sentence.

So I took a technique I had learned in writing dialogue and applied it to my own speech! I think because of writing I am a little more intentional about my ums in actual speech.

So, disfluencies can be just speech mistakes. As mistakes, they can be window into what a character is thinking or feeling. But they are also techniques for communication. And when I learn those techniques by polishing my writing dialogue, then I learn something I can apply to my own talking.

Is "intentional disfluency" an oxymoron?


Senior Member
You shouldn't break all of them. Elimination of the subject can make your sentence confusing.

In dialogue, some writers insist on turning every instance of: "She fell down that hill yesterday," into "Fell down that hill yesterday," even when the conversation lacks context determining who the subject is. It's often used as an attempt to make the dialogue sound informal or backwoods-y.

Sometimes it works, but usually, it leads to confusion.

Can you imagine a book review: "0/5. Characters expressed themselves using coherent grammar"?


Staff member
Global Moderator
I'm suggesting people could use the forum to practice their dialogue. :) It's not about ME. lol. I already do what I'm suggesting. :)
It's an interesting idea. But I see most people do just speak their minds here, as if in dialogue. That's the purpose of a discussion, even if it is electronic.

I always speak my mind here. That's why often after I have posted, I have to go back and edit because I can't stand seeing some of my lazy habits. Like this post, using the phrase, "speak my mind." It's repetitive. If I was writing, I would go back and change one of them.

I will, however, for the purpose of the discussion, control myself from editing after I hit "Post reply." :)
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