There are 3 noteworthy lightbulb moments I’ve had on my writing/publishing journey so far.
1. Said works best.
It seemed too good to be true, and unbelievably repetitive, but it’s a thing, people!
Giving your characters dialogue tags that end in: murmured, screamed, cried, bellowed, questioned, cooed, declared, groaned, wailed, implored, whined, inquired, mumbled, complained,…etc…
It’s telling. Obviously once in a while it’s fine, and I’ve read plenty of awesome books where the author deviated from “said” every now and again, but 8 out of 10 times, “said” works best. This Article is a great resource.
2. Industry people are all really nice and helpful.
I never thought otherwise, to be honest, but I always imagined they were all really OFFICIAL. POWERFUL. and INTIMIDATING. And I was SO NERVOUS the first time I spoke to my now-agent on the phone. Like heart-pounding-so-hard-I-thought-she-could-hear-it-through-the-phone nervous. Everyone I’ve encountered on my journey has been incredibly kind, and down-to-earth, and they all just want to bring great books to life and help deliver those books to the masses. They’re not out to hurt anyone, and they don’t thrive on crushing people’s dreams.
3. Grammar doesn’t have to be perfect in dialogue writing.
YAY. Writing dialogue is my favorite, and not having to obsess over perfect grammar makes me love it even more. It’s one less thing to think about during endless revisions, right?
What are some of your lightbulb moments on your writing journey??