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Course Description

Writing effective dialogue is a tricky business, but if done well, there is a big payoff. Dialogue can create a strong connection between character and audience. It can also quicken the pace of a story: plot clips along and denser passages of description are leavened. In this in-depth, eight-week workshop, students will learn how to craft well-timed and convincing dialogue. The cross-genre workshop will cover the basics of writing character monologues, penning dialogue for the stage and screen, and composing conversations for works of fiction. You will be encouraged to workshop your writing on an ongoing basis, and some supplemental readings and exercises will be completed throughout the course. Additionally, you will learn essential editing skills and techniques and will come away from the course knowing how to cut out unnecessary chatter!

Learning Outcomes

By the end of the course, the learner shouldl be able to:

  1. Create a 20-30 page portfolio of original dialogue in at least two different genres;
  2. Identify the basic techniques of dialogue writing by analyzing weekly assigned readings;
  3. Use terminology associated with dialogue writing through the discussion of weekly assigned readings;
  4. Write character monologues, dialogue for works of fiction, the stage and screen;
  5. Respectfully critique the creative work of others by participating in the workshop process, reading your own work and critiquing the work of others; and
  6. Apply rules of punctuation to your dialogue writing and demonstrate the editing process.

Course Topics

  • Use Your Words: Dialogue in the Service of Character 
  • Moving the Story Forward & Tension through Dialogue
  • Writing Dialogue for the Stage
  • Dialogue and Setting Tone and Mood
  • Writing Dialogue for the Screen
  • Lighten up! Writing Comedic Dialogue
  • Where Do I Go From Here?


Assessment Item Weight
Class Participation and Workshopping 25%
Short Fiction Project 25%
Stage Play Project 25%
Screen Play Project 25%
Total 100%

Please note that the course assessment is subject to change.

Sponsoring Partner

Applies Towards the Following Certificates

Technical Requirements

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*Course details are subject to change.


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