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Is it possible to write a good story without any dialogue? I'm working on a short story, and trying to keep it within 2000 words, but preferably 1000-1500 words.

I'm trying to write it as if the narrator is writing a manifesto/memoir stating his life experience, and his organizations purpose.

  • There's a difference between dialogue and monologue, and "no dialogue" and "no speech." A memoir or manifesto is a monologue of the narrator to the reader, so that's kind of direct speech. "No dialogue" meaning "no one speaks" is just narration describing what's going on. Which one are you aiming for? – Lauren-Clear-Monica-Ipsum Dec 30 '16 at 3:40
  • Can anyone name short stories or novels which exclusively contain narration? – BSalita Dec 30 '16 at 10:39
  • At first I didn't see the point of your question but now after reading answers and comments I noticed I haven't seen anyone give an example. – user6035379 Dec 30 '16 at 17:28
  • @user6035379 I can think of several, but they're all fanfic. – Lauren-Clear-Monica-Ipsum Dec 30 '16 at 20:56
  • I'm having difficulty putting what I'm trying to do into words, and I think that may be confusing people. I want the reader to read it like a manifesto, but it's a short story. I've written it to read like the narrator is writing the story, and the reader is picking it up, and reading it like a marx manifesto. I'm having trouble writing like this, because I've never done it before, and I was wondering if anybody could point out some short stories written in a similar way. I would be open to reading those fanfics if you can provide links. – Abram Frost Jan 2 '17 at 1:21
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Yes, of course it is. What you are describing is merely a story in which nobody speaks. Since it is perfectly possible to have a story in which a character is alone the entire time, why would it be a problem that there is no dialog?

Dialog is just the recording of a particular action: speech. You might as well ask if you can write a good story in which nobody eats or sleeps or fights or makes love or falls out of a tree.

If a story has story shape and is well told on a serious theme, it will be a good story, regardless of which actions characters take in the course of it. (Serious here does not mean not funny. It means takes the depiction of the human condition seriously, which can sometimes be very funny.)

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