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Gesture and Dialogue

May 23, 2014

Using this week’s exercise (see yesterday’s post), I took the following gesture and line of dialogue (this works best if you print out the options, cut into individual slips of paper, shuffle them and select one at random. It prevents overthinking the exercise before you begin.)

G: He stroked his beard.
D: ‘I’m your daughter.*

‘I’m your daughter.’

He froze, then sat back in his chair as if she’d given him a hard push. His eyes darted around the cafe as if searching for an escape route.

‘How can you be so sure?’ he said quietly.

She leaned forward. ‘Do you remember Cara Bishop?’

He stroked his beard, repeating the name to himself. ‘No, I don’t think so.’

‘There were others, then,’ the young woman said. ‘Lots of others.’ He was silent, waiting. ‘Cara Bishop was my mother. She was in your Comparative Ethics class in 1990?’

His face was blank, but one eyelid flickered.


* Thanks to the Writing Exercises website for this line.





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