Friday Flash Fiction – “Old News”

 “You ever seen that before?”

The two boys stopped the absorbing business of shooting B-B’s at cow pies to stare at the pick-up truck.

“No, but I never been on this end of the farm, neither.”

“What a rusted out heap.  Let’s go sit in it!”

Bouncing on the remaining seat springs and fighting over the steering wheel, a foot prodded a bag in the floorboard.

“What’s in that?”

“How am I supposed to know?  Open it up.”

They poured the cash onto the seat between them; read the brittle newspaper story of a long-ago robbery and shooting.

“There’s something else in this bag.  Looks like an old wallet.”

The leather cracked when it opened, the license yellowed around the black and white photo.

“Ummm….It’s your Dad.”


Dialogue is an important element to any fiction – long or short. Author and former private investigator, Gayle Bartos-Poole, states,

“It provides plot advancement, character development, and action or movement. In other words, it brings the story to life.

A character blurting out information that advances the plot is far more interesting than a long narrative description.

Through dialogue we discover character traits about the various people who populate our stories. How a person speaks and acts while talking says a lot more about him or her than mere words.

And dialogue provides real time action. You are in the room with the characters as they speak. You’re eavesdropping or right in the middle of the conversation. Or the character might be speaking directly to you.”

How did dialogue affect this piece?  Would the pace have been different if a narrative style had been employed?  As a reader, what do you look for in dialogue?

Leave a comment below, and link to your own flash fiction if possible.

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