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I just got sent a vast and hotly tipped new Irish novel set "against the faded grandeur of Dublin's north inner city" which, when I opened it, turned to be written entirely in appalling "Dublin north inner city" dialect.

I am still twitching slightly.

Seriously, dropping an "n" at the end of every "ing" sound does not make your writing sound like the speech of working class Dubliners. Nor does saying "ta" instead of "to" and "ya" instead of "you". It's absolutely appalling, lazy writing, the sort of thing that would only impress someone who's never actually talked to a working class person for more than two minutes in a row. I've said this before, but the ability to write good dialect is incredibly rare, and unless it's done well - Irvine Welsh, Paul Howard - it's noxious and patronising and unreadable. I'll give this book another shot, but every dropped 'n' makes me want to throw it across the room. And there are a lot of dropped 'n's.

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( 11 comments — Leave a comment )
clanwilliam
Jun. 12th, 2006 07:44 pm (UTC)
But everyone knows that northsiders are unwashed, ugly, poor, can't speak properly and keep coal in the bath. As well as eating their babies. And therefore cannot speak for themselves, but need nice, educated middle-class southsiders or foreigners [1] to do it for them.

[1] Anyone, really, as long as they're not a culchie.
jane_the_23rd
Jun. 12th, 2006 07:52 pm (UTC)
WHAT WOULD THE CULCHIES SAY TO THAT? After all, Michael Guiney's is in the North Inner City, and they, therefore, have as much right to speak for the 'natives' of the Monto and its surroundings as do the Plain People Of Killiney Hill.

*is further ashamed*





clanwilliam
Jun. 12th, 2006 07:55 pm (UTC)
Actually, I think we'd look at it all rather suspiciously and let the feckin' Dubs get on with their own crap.

And we'll continue to tip some quaint urchin 10 euro to keep an eye on our car during the All Ireland finals.
stellanova
Jun. 12th, 2006 08:01 pm (UTC)
This is true (especially the bit about the culchies). Yum yum, babies! Being a female northsider, I already have seventeen (one for every year since it became physically possible, of course). And four grandchildren.
clanwilliam
Jun. 12th, 2006 08:06 pm (UTC)
So the babies you ate grew up and provided you with grandchildren?

Now, that's a fair trick.
daegaer
Jun. 12th, 2006 11:10 pm (UTC)
My babies had babies by the time they was a year old, yeh feckin gobsheen.

*fiddles the dole while havin anudder dozen babies*
clanwilliam
Jun. 12th, 2006 11:19 pm (UTC)
Well, *I* crossed my legs like Sr Mercy Assumpta Concepta Gobnait Sebastian Immaculata told me and waited for marriage.

Cos that's what we do in the country.
daegaer
Jun. 12th, 2006 11:27 pm (UTC)
Now if yiz was smart like us jackeens, yid hav de manshuns de social welfare givs us fer havin babies every time we turn row-wind.
jane_the_23rd
Jun. 12th, 2006 07:49 pm (UTC)
*fights urge to make snarky wisecrack in dialect*

I'm goin' ta scream bloody moooooorthah.

Oops.

Ugh.


stellanova
Jun. 12th, 2006 07:59 pm (UTC)
DID YOU SECRETLY WRITE THIS BOOK?!

Sorry I missed your text earlier - I was waiting so long in Therapie that it was well after three when I got out and then my phone died. I can't believe the dress didn't fit! For fuck's sake. Will you get it before you go?
iliketea
Jun. 14th, 2006 11:52 am (UTC)
...but the ability to write good dialect is incredibly rare

So true. So very very true.
( 11 comments — Leave a comment )

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