Mixed Conversation–The Letter H

For this exercise you’re going to take three different characters from three different professions or walks of life. You’ll give them a location for their conversation as well as a topic of conversation and a conflict, and then you’ll write up a page (or more) of dialogue between them regarding your chosen topic. Try to have their professions and attitudes come through in the dialogue without ever having to state them outright, but try to make it natural and not forced. Allow their personalities to show.

You can as always brainstorm your own choice of professions and topics and the like, but if you’d prefer, here’s a set for you.


  • Hostess
  • Hawker
  • Historian

Topic of conversation: the concept of honor as it applies to everyday people’s actions and words. The conflict should arise out of their viewpoints, which should each be unique and should reflect their personalities, experiences, and livelihoods. Keep in mind that although I phrase the above topic as though it were some sort of philosophical conversation, most people don’t start conversations that way. Perhaps the entire thing started because one of the three accused one of the others (or a fourth person) of cheating on a deal and having no honor.

Location for the conversation: a haberdashery

By the way, if you ever want to use a letter in this way to help you come up with semi-random exercise pieces and you don’t have easy access to a physical dictionary, indictionary.com allows you to browse by letter. It doesn’t have the most amazingly thorough dictionary, but it’s still useful.

Posted in Writing

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