Doin’ Dialogue (ABC Wednesday, 2/5/14)

What's bothering you?

How to write dialogue like Aaron Sorkin, the writer/creator of The West Wing, Sports Night, and The Newsroom:

“What’s wrong?”
“Something’s wrong.”
“Nothing’s wrong!”
“Is something bothering you?”
“No, nothing’s bothering me.”
“Something is bothering you.”
“Nothing is bothering me!”
“Okay, okay….what’s up?”
“Something’s bothering me.”
Sigh. “What’s bothering you?”
“What’s bothering me?”
“Yes. What’s bothering you?”
“What’s bothering me is the way this country, this country that I love and revere, is, more and more, embracing the irrational, and it is tearing us to pieces. What’s bothering me is that people are coming to think that hard science is just another opinion, and not a very good one. What’s bothering me is that diseases which should be going permanently extinct are making a comeback and killing kids because a fringe of idiots out there won’t get their children vaccinated. What’s bothering me is that a growing segment of our population believes our laws should be based on their mostly uneducated notions of what it says in the Bible. What’s bothering me is that so many of our fellow citizens look to jackasses like Ted Nugent, Glenn Beck, and Rush Limbaugh, not to mention nearly the entire cast of that subpar sitcom known as Fox News, for guidance. What bothers me is that our country, which should be a powerhouse of productivity and enlightenment, is slipping into third world status when it comes to our industry and our ability to take care of our people. And you know what? Those are only some of the damned things that are bothering me, and it’s time we started doing a hell of a lot better, before it is absolutely, irrevocably, too late.”


I’ll return next Wednesday with the letter E. I hope you’ll stop by. I’m a writer and I post about a wide variety of non-alphabet-specific topics. Feel free to comment under my posts. If you want to subscribe to the blog, there’s a button in the sidebar.

Also, my adventure novel Doc Wilde and The Frogs of Doom is currently on sale to celebrate Valentine’s Day

For another fun ABC Wednesday post, visit the Carioca Witch here: Bringing Up Salamanders.

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6 comments on “Doin’ Dialogue (ABC Wednesday, 2/5/14)

  1. nydiacarioca says:

    Brilliant and dead on. <3

  2. I suspect 3 groups for causing all of these ills, there’s a lot of overlap but I think one stands out as by far the biggest culprit: fundamentalist Christians. Their home schooling and messing with educational legislation has caused generation after generation to become dumber, since about the 60’s. Their preaching has turned the common man against science, their brainwashing has made a virtue of NOT knowing. Some time back they chose the Republican party as their platform, since then they have managed to turn it into a haven of crazy fringe fanatics, which, since we only have 2 parties, has ruined American politics.

    Sadly I think it’s too late to fully reverse the damage, maybe it could have been done if the rest of the world had been standing still since the 70’s, but it hasn’t. China is about to race past America in pretty much every category. The best we can hope for is to avoid ending up last in the race, to maybe stage a comeback 50 years later, to avoid USA split up and the remnants needing humanitarian aid from Canada and Mexico and Haiti. Americans need to step up, rally, raise funds, organize to fight the fundamentalists.

  3. Roger Green says:

    I loved Sports Night. The other shows, too.

  4. lesliebc says:

    Sounds like you need to open the window and scream “I can’t take it anymore!” LOL I love your writing and look forward to next week.

    abcw team

  5. Gattina says:

    Like this post ! Especially as an European, I live in Belgium ! I can understand that you are bothered ! At least it proves that not all Americans are “jackasses” as you say. Didn’t know this word, lol !
    ABC Team

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