Dialogue that reads like it sounds

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  • Dialogue that reads like it sounds

    I have this tendancy to write dialogue the way it sounds, as exact as possible. For example:

    Hey Joe, how's it going? What have you been up to?

    If my character is say a Brooklyn teenaged boy I'd write it like this:

    Eh Joe, howzit goin'? Whatch'ya been up to?

    My question to this is would this be considered to be a distraction? I know it's a good idea to go lean on the actor directions (the wrylies?). Thanks for any feedback.... Chip
    My first crack at a logline usually makes a great synopsis!

  • #2
    Re: Dialogue that reads like it sounds

    don't do it. It's been done, but i wouldn't. you can mix uup a couple words if you'd like, but it gets distracting.
    You only get one chance to rewrite it 100 times.

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    • #3
      Re: Dialogue that reads like it sounds

      My advice would be to do this minimally. First of all, only do it when there is a distinction in what "correct" usage would be and how they say it. In other words, don't use "howzit," because that sounds exactly the same as "how's it." Also, try and use cadence and meter and word choice over pronunciation.
      "Witticism"
      -Some Guy

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      • #4
        Re: Dialogue that reads like it sounds

        Exactly what cynacide says.
        The end is too damn nigh.

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        • #5
          Re: Dialogue that reads like it sounds

          I'd be more concerned with language structure. In a script I just did, one character is a Polish immigrant and I don't accent his English but I arrange the words in the manner of which he'd speak.

          Also simply say he has an accent, don't make me read your idea of an accent if you're not confident in it or haven't grown up around it -- 'cause it could come off as total cheese.

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          • #6
            Re: Dialogue that reads like it sounds

            I second, or fifth, what they've said above.

            Writing phonetically can be more distracting than it's worth. I gather that it actually makes some people pretty dyslexic.

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            • #7
              Re: Dialogue that reads like it sounds

              I've read lots of scripts where dialogue was spaced phonetically. Lines like "fuhgetaboutit" It can be distracting though. Probably best to keep it to dictionary words.

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              • #8
                Re: Dialogue that reads like it sounds

                Thank you all for your input! It's greatly appreciated... Chip
                My first crack at a logline usually makes a great synopsis!

                Comment


                • #9
                  Re: Dialogue that reads like it sounds

                  John
                  (with thick Brooklyn accent)
                  What's up Joe, how you doing?


                  John
                  (in Spanish)
                  What's up Joe, how you doing?

                  John
                  (with a Texas drawl)
                  What's up Joe, how you doing?

                  Well, something like that.

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                  • #10
                    Re: Dialogue that reads like it sounds

                    Well that certainly simplifies things!
                    My first crack at a logline usually makes a great synopsis!

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Re: Dialogue that reads like it sounds

                      Originally posted by boski
                      In fact, to this day, I'm still not aware of a single kid-and-animal movie that features a black kid in the lead. Not one.
                      Sounder?
                      "Forget it, Jake. It's Hollywood."

                      My YouTube channel.

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                      • #12
                        Re: Dialogue that reads like it sounds

                        here's a example of what charli was talking about. i for one think this is the best way
                        to accomplish the affect you're looking for. this is from
                        the script bruce almighty. while it may not mean he's talking
                        phonetically, it is describing the way it is said and how it's
                        said.

                        (Note: Whenever Bruce speaks on camera he speaks in his
                        "REPORTER'S VOICE" -- that recognizable, too-smooth delivery
                        that all news reporters seem to have. In mathematical terms
                        Bruce's version is to the 7th power.)

                        BRUCE
                        For three decades the Kowolski Family
                        Bakery has been a mainstay in downtown
                        Buffalo. Known for their sinfully
                        rich, cream filled, deep fried polski
                        pierogis. And the occasional sugar
                        induced coma that follows. Today, in
                        honor of their 30 year anniversary,
                        Momma Kowolski and her sons Gustov
                        and Vol, decided to do something, a
                        little bit different. Tell me guys,
                        how did this idea come about?

                        GUSTOV
                        You only get one chance to rewrite it 100 times.

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