Having trouble writing natural dialogue for your film. These 5 tips will give you a great jumpstart.
Watch good films and watch bad films. So when you watch good films and bad films, what that allows you to do is tell the difference between good writing and bad writing and why writing is good and why writing is bad.
So, tip number two, research, right? So whatever your script is about, and you're writing a drama or a horror movie or a period piece or whatever you're doing, you need to research it, even if it's not a true story, even if it's a made up narrative. So, for my film, Sincerely Brenda, one of the main characters was an alcoholic and so, I'm not an alcoholic, I've never lived with an alcoholic. You know, there may have been people in my family that I saw some of that, but I didn't experience it firsthand and so I had to do research. I had to read blogs, I had to watch videos, I had to talk to people that I knew, who lived that, or lived with someone that experienced alcoholism.
- I'm recovered, I haven't had a drink in 10 years.
- That's great, Charles, good for you.
- Donny, I know I made some bad choices.
- Charles, let's not do this today, please.
- I know I wasn't the best father for you and Michael.
- What are you doin', man?
- I'm trying to open up.
- Open up, this is not the time to ...
- And so I had to just gather that research, and so, when you gather the research, it helps you to begin to write authentic dialog, right? You can't just make up, well, you know, when you're writing scripts, you are, certain things you are making up out of your head but you still have to base it in something, right? So I did my research. Again, I talked to friends, I talked to family, I read blogs, I read books, I watched videos and I gathered all this information that helped me write more naturalistic, authentic dialog, okay? Tip number three, writing is listening and observing, okay? So what do I mean by that? So, when you're out with friends or you're hanging with family, listen to the conversations, listen to how people are talking, listen to how people are responding to something that's being said, look at the body language, observe the body language of someone that, somethin' may have been said to them that you know, maybe caught them off guard or that raised their defenses or made them happy. Okay, so look at how, observe how they're responding to what's being said and listen to what they're saying. Listen to how they're responding, listen to what people are saying. And listen to strangers too. When you're out in public, just listen to conversations. Again, writing is a, is listening and observing, which carries me into tip number four. When you begin to write the dialog, say it out loud. When I'm writing, I'm always, I'll write certain things out, the dialog and then I'll get up and I'll read the script out, talk to myself, I'll say these lines, dialog to myself, my wife thinks I'm crazy. Sometimes she'll hear me talking to myself and I mean, but that's just my process you know. It may not work for you but it works for me. So I'll say these things out loud and I'll begin to hear again, things that are awkward, things I need to take out, things that I should add. So that's tip number four, say the lines out loud. Tip number five, it's kind of an add on to tip number four, do a table read. So get some friends together, people that you trust, people that will give you good feedback and let them read the script out loud because then you'll be able to hear other people read and when you hear other people read your lines, you will hear things that don't make sense or things you should add and then they'll give you feedback, you know, about, was this believable, how do they feel? You'll begin to see how the script plays and reads when you see other people read your dialog. So that's it guys, that's the five things. One, watch good movies and bad movies. Tip two, research. Tip three, listen and observe. Tip four, read your lines out loud and tip five, get friends together to read the script together and give you feedback. All right, so again, if you guys have any questions, DM me your question or email me your question and I'll make a video for you. All right thanks, talk to you soon.