PDA

View Full Version : Accents...


SFFWorld.com
Home - Discussion Forums - News - Reviews - Interviews

New reviews, interviews and news

New in the Discussion Forum


Sammi
June 4th, 2002, 05:28 PM
Do you think putting accents in characters dialogue work? For example, if I was writing in my accent it would be missing all t's a h's. But other things like missing g's off the end of words, so I'd write missin' and thin'. Do you think that sounds right, or should that just be left for the reader to decide on accent?

Radthorne
June 4th, 2002, 05:44 PM
I think accents can be effective if done in moderation. However, one way to acheive a similar effect is to alter your character's speech patterns. By making them talk differently, you can convey the same idea of an accent without the potential confusion resulting from excess punctuation.

I did a little of both in my excerpt that's posted here at SFFWorld:
http://www.sffworld.com/authors/r/radthorne_kevin/excerpts/roadtokotaishi.html

While the lamplighter character in this passage does drop the ending "g" from many of his words, it's the way he speaks, I think, that really sets him apart from the main character Shiko, and from the narrator's voice. Most of my other, similar characters do not drop the "g" and rely primarily on the speech patterns and choice of vocabulary to highlight a 'difference,' usually one of social station.

sci-fi_fantasy_fanatic
June 4th, 2002, 08:34 PM
I think accents can be effective if done in moderation.
I completly and totaly agree with Radthorne's statement.

Another route you can take is use it for one of your minor characters, say a nautical race of humans who slur their r's.
Like arrrrre ye rrrrrascal. Of course this is an extreme example, but toned down, it would be interesting twist. But, I repeat, only for a minor character or race. :)

milamber_reborn
June 5th, 2002, 12:19 AM
Another technique is simply to let the reader know how a character or race talks. For example, the Seanchan in Jordan's WOT. He says that they slur their words and speak slowly, but they talk normal.

Sammi
June 5th, 2002, 07:45 AM
I decided not to do an accent in the end, but I did use a different style of speech (the character muddles her words up, eg 'how be you?' instead of 'how are you?'). Good advice though, me thinks!. Btw, liked that excerpt, Radthorne!

Sammi x

Radthorne
June 5th, 2002, 10:36 AM
:) Thanks, Sammi! :)