It is no secret that I am a novice writer. So that means I am on a never ending quest to improve my craft. I surf blogs, read books and discuss things with my critique group. So far I have compiled quite a list of things I have found helpful and thought I would start sharing them you.
As I write I am learning my strengths and weakness. (My inner critic tells me there are more weakness than strengths but I am working on making the shift to more strengths) The first dilemma I decided to tackle was dialogue. I found a great book by Gloria Kempton called "Dialogue" . It is from the "Write Great Fiction" series and is the text book for a class offered through Writers Digest. I thought, well if I can't take the class I can at least get the book. So far I have found many helpful techniques and exercises to help me find a unique voice for my character's.
This will also mark the beginning to a new "helpful hints" thread I will be adding to my blog so I may pass along things I have leaned from professionals in the field. Today's hint will be from the above mentioned book.
The question asked: What if all my characters start talking and they all sound the same?
Know your character. Ground yourself in all of their persona's, protagonist and antagonist alike and all minor characters no matter how unlikable. Write first person character sketches letting the characters tell you who they are. The more time you spend with them the better you get to know them. If you absolutely can't slip inside of any one of your characters, fire him and get a new one to take it's place.
This is just a small part of a whole chapter but I found that writing a character sketch made it easier for me to write that character.