How to Write a Dialogue in Essay?

Writing a narrative essay is telling a story. When you include dialogue, it can be confusing to the reader unless you make it clear who is talking. If you write the exact words of the individual, you need to use quotation marks.

If you do not use the words in their exact form, this is indirect dialogue and does not need quotation marks. Writing dialogue in the correct form and finding your writing style is important when writing a narrative essay.

Dialogue rules

  • Use quotation marks to indicate the exact words of the speaker. Example: “Can we go to the park today?” said Mary.
  • Start a new paragraph every time there is a change in speaker. Even if someone only says a word or two, you still have to start a new paragraph.

Example: “Mark, come here” said Jill.

“No” said Mark.

“Please come here. It’s urgent!” said Jill.

  • If a quote is a question or exclamation, the quotation marks fall outside of the question mark or exclamation point. Example: “Why did you eat my food?”
  • If a quote isn’t a question or exclamation, use a comma and not a period before the quotation marks. Example: “I missed the bus,” said Emma.
  • Use single quotation marks if the person speaking is quoting someone else. Example: Susan began to cry. “When you said, ‘I never want to see you again!’ it broke my heart.”

Why is effective dialogue important?

Without effective dialogue, a story can fall completely flat. The readers often pay the most attention to the dialogue. Dialogue helps to create convincing characters and tells you more about their strengths and flaws, as well as giving you insight into how they feel.

According to a leading custom essay service, it has to be done in the right way if it is to accomplish its purpose. When it is well-written, it draws readers deep into the story and helps to drive it forward. It helps to show the relationship between characters, build tension and evoke emotion.

Get to know the character’s voices

Level of education, personality and the neighborhood people grew up in are some of the factors that influence how they speak. Make a habit of listening and pay attention to things like the words they use, how they pronounce them and whether they speak softly or loudly. Do they have a tendency to emphasize certain words, have a lisp or the hint of an accent?

Practice writing dialogue by picking two contrasting characters. Consider their backstories and characters to think about what they may sound like and then use their voices to write a dialogue that takes place between them.

Keep it real

If you want to write good dialogue in your narrative easy, you need to keep it real. Sometimes what people don’t say is as telling as what they say. Perhaps a character is a type that responds to someone else’s anger with silence.

People often do not say what is on their minds and speak about things in a way they want others to see them and not how they really are.

It may be in line with a character’s personality to lie compulsively or to be brutally honest. The way a character speaks tells a great deal about who they are and sheds light on certain traits that could ultimately play an important part in the unfolding of a story.

Get it all out in a first draft

Focus on getting all your ideas on the page, including the dialogue. Nothing you write is set in stone and it will probably change a great deal before you have a final product.

Figure out what you want your characters say and why you want them to say it. Write freely at first. Getting the dialogue to sound more realistic can come later. Every bit of dialogue you write is good practice and helps you to refine the voices of your characters. Even experienced authors can battle with writing dialogue right the first time.

Review what you have written

When analyzing the dialogue you have written, you need to assess various factors. Does it move the plot along? Does it give more insight into a character’s motivations, strengths or weaknesses? Does it help to set the atmosphere or mood for a scene? If it does not accomplish these purposes, you should rather cut it out as it will only distract from the story you want to tell.

A final word

Don’t despair if the dialogue you’ve written sounds forced – writing realistic dialogue takes practice. Make a habit of listening to how people speak and think about how your characters would speak. Think about what you want them to say and get this down on paper. You can go back to what you’ve written and keep refining it until it feels authentic and achieves its purpose in your story.


Author Bio:

John Peterson is a journalist, writer and editor with 4 years’ experience working with a top essay writing service London magazine “Shop&Buy.” His academic writing has been rated as one of the best by several academic reviewers. He is a professional mini-tennis player and has authored the popular novel “His heart.” You can find him on FB or at SuperiorPapers, dissertation writing services