Re: RARA-AVIS: Re: John D. MacDonald

Date: 02 Apr 2001 wrote:

>I've always thought that when a writer makes his/her points clear only
>through dialogue, he/she is just not competent. This is a rash
>exaggeration, but this is how I feel about these matters. The points
>should be made through some other devices, plot, atmosphere, the
>relations between characters, et cetera.

> But in the hands of a good writer, dialogue can, and should,
> deliver plot, atmosphere, the relations between characters, et
> cetera.

> Read the dialogue of someone like Elmore Leonard or George Higgins
> (or even Robert Parker) and you can see what dialogue can do...

Agreed. Of course, it doesn't have to be an either/or thing. But someone who can make all their points through dialogue, and do it using naturalistic and non-expositional dialogue, is not only competent but skillful.

Those of you who scorn it--try it sometime. It's -not- easy.

> And maybe it's a cultural thing, but like Marianne, I think the
> idea of a Rolls-Royce pick-up is a hoot.

Yah, me too. Of course, I started reading the McGee novels when I was only 14, over 20 years ago. I don't know how I'd react to them if I came to them cold, now.


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