Balancing action, narrative and dialogue

Fellow writers! What are your thoughts on balancing action, narrative and dialogue? I tend to write first drafts that are extremely dialogue heavy because I feel it moves the plot along. But when I try to balance it out with action and description it feels… unnecessary.

Thoughts and opinions?

About Jodie @ Words Read & Written

Book blogger & aspiring author.
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4 Responses to Balancing action, narrative and dialogue

  1. The Bewildered 20-Something Writer says:

    Oh man, this is a tricky one because it’s all so subjective. I’m in the camp that thinks there’s no such thing as too much dialogue, just like I think there’s no such thing as too much action or narrative description, and that it all comes down to what type of piece it is that you’re working on. I think the best way to “balance” them is to just let the story do its thing. Good stories keep the plot moving along while providing insight into the character and maintaining point of attachment with the character. The best way to do that is to let the story progress the way it naturally would in the first draft, then take a decent amount of time afterwards to detach yourself as much as possible from the first draft before you start making edits.

    Or, if possible, give it to someone you trust to read it. It’s *really* hard to edit your own stuff, and things that you think are great might not go over all that well with a different reader…or, vice versa, something you might be worried about (like having too much dialogue) might actually be just fine in the eyes of another reader.


    • jodiellewellyn says:

      It is tricky. Really tricky because I really dislike when novels have a lot of description, but at the same time, too much dialogue feels… childish? I don’t know.

      But that’s a good idea about getting someone else to read it. I just feel like it needs a lot of work before I let it out into the world, haha.


      • The Bewildered 20-Something Writer says:

        Letting a manuscript out into the world is one of the hardest and scariest things a writer can do haha. But don’t be afraid to do it! The best edits I’ve made to my own work have come from feedback from trusted readers.


  2. jodiellewellyn says:

    Do you have any writing/critique groups that you recommend?


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