Today’s guest is James R. Callan. He’s had a successful career in mathematics and computer science, receiving grants from the National Science Foundation and NASA. He left the technology field to pursue his real love, writing. He has had four non-fiction books published, but his passion is mystery and suspense novels. His eleventh book is scheduled to be published in spring, 2016. James, I’ve downloaded your book and can’t wait to read it. I love mysteries.
Before we get to James’s word of wisdom, a little of my writing news. We enjoyed a grand party encouraging everyone to read through their Bible this year (or maybe longer) and celebrating the release of Beginnings: 30 Days in Genesis – Exodus. Thanks to everyone who attended.
My Great Escapes Mystery Book Tour starts today. I have a few other blog visits along the way. You can check out the list below or head to (link) which lists them all in one place.
1/11 StoreyBook Reviews
1/12 Babs Book Bistro
1/12 Sarah Ruut
1/13 Laura’s Interests, Giveaway
1/14 Island Confidential, Giveaway working
1/17 Cozy Up With Kathy
1/20 deal sharing aunt
1/22 Book Babble
1/24 dru’s book musings
Now let’s hear from James:
Learn to Use Dialog Signatures
James R. Callan
Consider making a dialog signature for your major characters. What is a dialog signature? Your signature is a unique representation of you. Put it on a document and people know that document is from you. Similarly, a dialog signature identifies the speaker. It is the unique pattern that makes it clear who is speaking.
So, what makes up a dialog signature? It is what makes a character’s speech unique, what sets her apart from others, at least in terms of dialog.
What does your character sound like? What is distinctive about his or her voice?
When you make up a bio, or character sketch, consider including the character’s dialog signature. What is her
* Vocabulary or word choice
* Regional dialect
* Sentence structure, or lack of
* Eye contact
* Body language
* Favorite words
* Marker words
Each character should have a different set of these aspects of speech. You do not want all characters to sound alike. Ideally, the reader should know who is speaking by the way she speaks.
Does this character answer in as few words as possible ,or does she ramble on and on?
Does she have a regional dialect, certain words or patterns that are different from others in the book? Is her manner easy and smooth, or stilted? Is her body language significant? Does he have certain words he often uses? Does he always speak in complete sentences, or complex sentences? Or maybe he often speaks in fragments.
Write out a dialog signature for your major characters, pin it on the bulletin board behind your computer. Keep it in mind for that person’s dialog. Your readers will appreciate it.
A large corporation is taking land by eminent domain. Syd Cranzler stands in its way, threatening a court battle. After a heated meeting with the corporation representative, Syd is found dead from an overdose of heart medication. The police call it suicide. Case closed.
But Father Frank, Syd’s pastor, and Georgia Peitz, another member of the church, don’t believe Syd committed suicide and begin to look for clues of what really happened. And this has an ill affect on Georgia’s budding romance with the lead detective.
When the priest is almost poisoned, they convince the police to investigate further. Immediately, Father Frank becomes the target of rumors and speculation he might have had something to do with Syd’s death.
Amazon Author Page: http://amzn.to/1eeykvG
Over My Dead Body, is available at: http://amzn.to/1BmYQ0Q