I'm working on a second draft, and when I hit this stage I always find that one character says the same thing in many scenes, so I have to go through and weed out the repetition and replace it with lines that makes sense. With the last book one character was always saying Jesus! This time my pet response seems to be What are you talking about? Or, for a big change: I don't know what you're talking about.

Ugh.


If someone says something that you think is bullshit nutty, what do you say?

Usable and unusable lines welcome!

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Nonsense!
That is, it depends on who is talking, but my protagonist is an educated man.
Often I think it's best not to have a response. Just keep things moving.
What John said — it's definitely an art that I'm still learning.
A catchphrase can be part of the characterization, even if it's irritating. (If you want to create an irritating character.) I like to make one draft that consists only of working on one character's lines at a time. (Character A front to back, then Character B, then C, etc.) I think this makes ti easy to spot the repetitive speech patterns, as well as maybe pick one I like to help to personalize this character.
Sweet Kitty! :o)~

Oh Goodnight!

Bullfeces...

Have you ever danced with the devil in the pale moon light?

Not original, but make me smile...
i.J. -- nonsense is good.
John M and Grant -- I always forget about that damn delete key! i think a lot of problems can be solved by simply removing offending text and dialog. And I definitely need to think more about moving ahead with no response.
Dana -- That sound like a great method! It also sounds like something I wouldn't stick with because I'm so lazy, but I really like it.

John B -- Haha!! Wow. So weird to see that line pop up. :D

And I actually like Oh goodnight.
Huh?
huh is a good one.
heh!
I like "heh!" too, but it reminds me a bit too much of John Stewart's impersonation of GW.
I spent a year teaching and my students made me aware of how many times I said 'interesting.' But then they also were the first to make me aware that my hair was thinning.
I also once found my self as a student in a Train-the-Trainer class where the instructor stressed the importance of responding to participant's comments. She then told us that when she was faced with something so stupid that she could not in good conscience agree she would respond with, "That's an idea."
that's like relatives telling me my book was "interesting". :D

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