Four ways to write authentic creative nonfiction dialogue

January 16, 2018

Four ways to write authentic dialogue, creative nonfiction, fiction, writing process

Writing authentic dialogue. I know some of you shutter when you see that.

I’m happy to say you don’t have to, but dialogue is an essential part of telling any story, fiction or nonfiction.

No wonder we put so much pressure on ourselves to write dialogue that works for our stories. It’s meant to help move the narrative forward, it reveals vital insights into our characters, it gives a sense of time and place, and more.

Every writer wants to create authentic dialogue. So when it comes to creating that authenticity, how do we go about doing it?

Today on Creatively Genuine, I discuss four tactics which help me create dialogue in my creative nonfiction novel.

As part of the “creative” side of this nonfiction story, I need to write dialogue spoken at moments I did not witness and by people who passed away years ago. I cannot interview them and take notes on how they speak or to confirm what they actually said.

It feels like a high wire act, at times.

That’s the creative part of my creative nonfiction novel, and the dialogue has to be authentic to my audience.

Hopefully one or all four of these tactics I talk about today can help you, even if you’re writing fiction.

Dave is a professional writer and photographer from Lancaster, Pa. His writing podcast, Creatively Genuine, is available on iTunes and Google Play.

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1 Comment
    1. Dave, that was an insightful episode. I’m a Poet and fiction writer and I often strive for authentic dialogue.

      Your podcast is fantastic, keep up the good work.

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