This is a great exercise specifically for writers, but it can help all creatives be more aware of their surroundings. Have a pen and journal handy and record an overheard conversation. Write down who is involved and a few key things about them and the situation. Then write down word for word what each one is saying. This is a great exercise when trying to write dialogue. It will give you a better understanding of how people speak to one another. It may sound a lot different when you concentrate on their words and listen.
When writing dialogue it can often come across as stale or unnatural. This exercise will train your ear and your mind to listen to the natural dialogue. Write down how the people in the conversation are talking to one another. Are they angry, frustrated or excited? What is the setting? Are they sitting at a table at Starbucks or are you listening to your kids play in the next room?
Even if you’re not a writer working on dialogue, this might be a fun creative activity to take part in. Maybe it will spark another interest and you write a short story around it.
This week, take on the role of a spy and record an overheard conversation.