This is a challenge we had in my creative writing class back in college that remains with me.
Using only dialogue, take the story you’re working on and write a scene using only dialogue. No descriptions and nothing outside of quotation marks. Reveal as much or as little as you wish about the scene you’re working on.
After that has been written, turn around and add in the other details. Do you really need all of the dialogue you wrote, or can some of it be revealed otherwise?
This exercise helped me understand the use of dialogue as well as the use of other details in the importance of setting up a scene. It’s all about the balance between the two. Too much dialogue can be tedious just as well as not enough dialogue.
How do you find the perfect balance with your dialogue?