Practice-W Exercise Archives
These exercises were
written by IWW members and administrators to provide structured
practice opportunities for its members. You are welcome to use them for
practice as well. Please mention that you found them at the Internet
Writers Workshop (http://www.internetwritingworkshop.org/).
Posted May 28, 2006
are always on the lookout for good story ideas. An overheard
often produces a spark upon which a plot can be built. Perhaps it's the
conversation in the grocery store that provides fodder for a mystery
But what do you do with it?
This exercise will focus on dialogue enhancement. Take the snippets of
provided below and imagine a setting in which this conversation might
and the characters who might speak these lines. In 300 words or less,
write a scene
around the given dialogue so that we understand the characters, where
they are and
why the conversation is taking place.
Your "enhancement" might make the conversation humorous, angry,
or just an ordinary dinner table chat. Through your addition of
dialogue tags, the reader should be able to clearly see two characters
in a particular
setting having this particular conversation. Here are the lines you
"I can't believe you just said that."
"Why? What's wrong with that?"
"You're kidding me, right?"
"Hey, it's the truth. I call it like I see it."
" But, under the circumstances . . . "
In 300 words or less, write a scene around the above dialogue so we
understand the characters, where they are and why the conversation is
When critiquing, let writers know if the dialogue makes sense for the
characters and setting chosen. Do you know where the action takes
personalities revealed? Are the dialogue tags helpful in enhancing the
being stilted? How could the writers have made scenes better?
Web site created by
Rhéal Nadeau and
the administrators of the Internet Writing Workshop.
Modified by Gayle Surrette.