Posted by: victanguera | August 2, 2011

Enjoy the Silence: Writing Prompt #347

I’m sure that others have also heard the term “awkward silence”, like somehow we should dread those moments when the conversation lulls. With some people, it appears that instead of listening to you say, they hear enough to prepare their next story for those moments when we take a breath. And as often happens in that case, we never finish what we started to say.

Stories seem to work a little better if we don’t follow some of the normal mannerisms people use when talking to each other–like saying “um”, “you know”, “like” or other verbal ticks. But that propensity for people to interrupt conversation and jump in with their own story is a pretty universal.

So for today’s prompt, think of all the ways you can use this technique. If your main character needs to know information, and another person jumps in with a “story” that is seemingly trivial, can you use this to drive you plot? Is it possible that the character is giving disinformation intentionally? Is this over-talker always like this–especially in stress or tense situations? How does your main character react?

Hopefully not like me; I just tend to clam up and let others talk.

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