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The Writing (and Artistic) Ranting Thread

therogis

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Not sure how to weave the prologue into the rest of the story. Also, when three of your characters are unable to speak, dialogue goes out of the window...think I may have shot myself on this one.
Not related to inability to speak, but it definitely relates to whether dialogue is necessary: something like a year or two ago I read a novel which didn't have dialogue at all. The characters talked to each other, sure, but it wasn't written as dialogue. It was written like "A and B both decided to order coffee. After that things got heated as their intercourse evolved even more political. A seemed to think that..." etc.

It was quite slick, especially when it took a while for me as the reader to even notice it's not written as dialogue usually is :D
 

Morgan

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Inability to speak doesn't necessarily mean an inability to communicate if the point is conveying information.

Now, if they can't write, can't use sign language, and can't interpret body language or facial cues, that sounds more like a shot in the foot.
 

Angel

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Yeah, it's utterly reliant on body language and facial expressions. These characters have had their tongues removed, so it's been a challenge to convey the subtleties of communication using no words. I've managed ok so far, but I'm having to stop often and re-read things to make sure it tracks properly. I'm very visual, so in my head I can see it all perfectly. I just need to convey what I'm seeing in my mind to those on the outside.

It definitely puts my written skills to the test
 

therogis

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Yeah, it's utterly reliant on body language and facial expressions. These characters have had their tongues removed, so it's been a challenge to convey the subtleties of communication using no words. I've managed ok so far, but I'm having to stop often and re-read things to make sure it tracks properly. I'm very visual, so in my head I can see it all perfectly. I just need to convey what I'm seeing in my mind to those on the outside.

It definitely puts my written skills to the test
That actually sounds pretty damn interesting. Like, I don't know how much does your story rely on that, but on a thematic level studying how people without ability to speak communicate. Eventually that leads into some kind of an inner culture between these individuals, and strengthens the conception of body language and visual cues.

For me, direct dialogue has always been the easiest part, and in our writing club it has been said several times it's certainly the strongest part of my writing. The problem is that I tend to neglect body language and non-verbally signaled emotions (which, again, are a weakness of mine, according to both myself and the club). So yeah, it definitely would be a skill test for me as well! :D
 

Angel

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The idea kind of ran away with itself - it's three characters, brothers, who have been made unable to speak, so there's now an element of their sibling connection on a subconscious level to the whole thing. They play a large, if not main, role in my story, so it's both fun and really quite tricky to see how they fit with different speaking characters.

What started out as a small element of half a chapter has now become quite major - for example, they witness the murder of a relative, whilst it is expected they do not react to it, I still need to convey emotion - albeit tightly controlled. So micro-expressions are essential here.

I haven't had any time to really sit down and write recently, because of work, but after this week I'm hoping to get some more done. Because I really want to add some humanity to these characters, even though they are the bad guys in my story. Or, at least, three of the bad guys.

I'm trying to create a level of complexity and depth that kinda makes someone stop and think about how they judge a character and what makes them pick a favourite/favourites to champion, even if it's usually not a conscious decision. No one in my story is outright good or bad - I guess I got sick of reading books that sort of forced the reader to champion so and so, when in reality that character wasn't all that anyway.

I dunno. Prolly being overly ambitious, but why not?
 
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