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Writing Workshop – Week 8

Exercise – Richard Bausch – Aren’t You Happy for Me?

Daniel Teo

Write a scene of a telephone call between two people who are each going through their own drama. The narrator is slightly closer to the character with the ‘real’ drama. The other person also has something dramatic, but it is told in a funnier, more exaggerated way. The narrator is keeping things moving, keeping things light-hearted.

Click here to read the story

This exercise focuses on an area which we haven’t touched upon a lot yet: dialogue! In a way, dialogue is both easier and harder to write than for example description or action. It’s easier it keeps the scene moving along at a brisker pace without ‘telling’ too much. But I’ve noticed that it’s very easy sometimes to get caught up in the dialogue, precisely because it moves at such a brisk pace, while losing focus on the main story. This exercise is particularly useful, because the narrator has to step out of the dialogue to reflect and show a little bit of what is going on, which adds to the story.

Now on to the critique of the story. Continue reading

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