Thursday, September 22, 2016

Talkin' Heads #16

TITLE: Trembling Truth
GENRE: Adult Thriller


 I grow alarmed the best thing to do is to flee I take my coat from the chair and put it ‘I saw your friend yesterday.’

‘Which friend?’ Mike asks, narrowing his eyes at me.

‘Sam, it was weird I saw him in my street looking at my window.’ I say

‘Are sure it was him?’

‘Of course I am sure, what makes you think I am not?’

‘Did you drink?’ 

‘I had a couple of drinks,’ I say.

‘So you might have mistaken my friend to someone else.’

 ‘I know what I saw please tell your friend not creep in my neighbourhood.’

‘Why don’t tell him yourself when you see him!’

‘What happened that night?’

 ‘I already told you what happened.’

‘I find it strange that I danced with your friend then he’s creeping at my neighbourhood staring at my window the same day you left me that bloody note’

‘What do you want me to say?’ He barks.

‘How about the truth!’ I snap.

‘You’re thirty-six, you are responsible for your life and of your actions if you didn’t drink senseless you wouldn’t be in this position now, would you? Where is your self-respect?’

‘Why don’t go ahead and say it!’

‘Say what?’

‘Since I had been here all you did was making remarks about my lifestyle, I want to hear it come out from your mouth come on, sweetheart, hit me with it I’m a big girl I can take it’

‘You said so yourself, you are an alcoholic, you are weak, and pathetic it’s disgraceful the way you behave.’

‘Boy, you are good looking but does your mouth make up for it.’

‘For what? For saying the truth? You told me to say it now you’re pissed off because I did, what’s wrong with you?’





  1. First, thanks for sharing this excerpt.

    I like the tension in this dialogue. The conflict really comes through, especially in the second part.

    I struggled with knowing who was speaking. A few more dialogue tags or action beats could keep things more clear.

    One thing you could do to make the dialogue feel more natural is to include more contractions. Sentences like this one--‘Of course I am sure, what makes you think I am not?’--don't sound like the way people actually speak.

    I would also suggest that you have someone read through to help you with comma placement, check for missing words and periods, and help with prepositions. It's a little rough at this point.

    I'm not sure if the beginning got mangled when it was posted. Should there be something between "I take my coat from the chair and put it" and "‘I saw your friend yesterday.’"? It feels like a chunk was left out.

    Thanks again for sharing your work, and good luck.

  2. This writing strikes me that possibly English is not your first language? If so, you may want to find a critique partner to help with subtleties.

    You could leave out the "I snapped" The reader will know who is talking there. Overall, the fight seems real.

  3. You do a good job of including conflict in this exchange.

    Some of the sentences need better proofreading, though. For example,

    "I grow alarmed the best thing to do is to flee I take my coat from the chair and put it ‘I saw your friend yesterday.’"

    This sentence didn't make a lot of sense to me. You need periods after "alarmed" and "flee," and I'm not sure what you're trying to say in the rest of the sentence.

    I also don't know when your story is set or what the relationship is between the two characters who are talking. It would be helpful if you could work in some actions or thoughts between the dialogue that would make the setting more clear. (Like the phrase "Mike asks, narrowing his eyes at me" you include near the beginning.)

  4. Where this is going is intriguing.

    But…I don't understand the first sentence. There are some missing words and punctuation problems throughout the piece.

    Sam, it was weird—I stumbled, thinking you were addressing someone. Consider 'Sam. It was weird' or 'Sam, and it was weird'

    He barks sounds odd.

    The tension is there, but, for me, the dialog sounded forced at the end.

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