How to Use Interjections Effectively

Writing realistic and interesting dialogues has always been a difficult task for writers. You want your dialogues to look natural, no matter whether you’re writing fiction or non-fiction. Editors from have great experience in editing manuscripts of any kind so they decided to provide you with some actionable tips that will help you make your dialogues better. For example, an interjection will help you add a human touch to your dialogues.

First, let’s figure out what an interjection is. It’s a separate noun in a sentence that is aimed to communicate a certain emotion. We call such nouns separate because they are not connected to other parts of a sentence grammatically. Interjections are often used by writers to make their prose more realistic because people use many interjections in their everyday speech. Quite often, interjections are followed by exclamation points. For example, there are such interjections as “wow,” “huh,” or “ouch.”

“Wow! This Is Great!”

This sentence perfectly illustrates the purpose of interjections. The word “wow” is only connected to the sentence by the context but it’s not the part of the sentence grammatically. The exclamation point adds even more excitement. When reading such a sentence, you can immediately imagine a character’s intonation or facial expression. If you compare this sentence to a simple “This is great,” the example above will be much more emotional, while also adding more meaning. Interjections are often perceived as complete sentences because they can be quite meaningful. For example, such interjection as “Whatever!” when used in the right context, can tell your readers a lot about a character’s feelings and the situation in general.

Filling Pauses

There are also interjections that don’t have any particular meaning but serve another purpose, replacing boring pauses. We, uh, use these interjections when, um, making pauses in speech. Filling pauses with interjections can help you tell more about a character’s traits, such as impatience, modesty, nervousness, etc. To choose the right interjection, just imagine real people talking and think of what sounds they would make. You can also use sounds that you make in different situations when talking to others.

“Ha! I’ve Seen Your Job Offer, and… Wow, Like It!”

Although interjections are a great tool when you want to make your fiction or non-fiction prose more natural, you should avoid them in formal writing. If you have to write an academic paper or business letter, interjections will make your writing look too informal and unprofessional. If your potential employer sees the sentence above, you will quickly get rejected. However, there are some exceptions. For example, if you write an academic paper and provide a direct quotation from somebody’s speech, you can use interjections. To decide whether you can use interjections or not, think about the appropriate tone and context of your writing.

Interjections allow you to express emotions when creating dialogues. However, don’t overuse them, even if you’re writing fiction. Interjections can make your characters more realistic when used appropriately, helping you provide your readers with insights into these characters’ personalities. This way, your characters will become more relatable and memorable.

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