"A dramatic monologue is a long excerpt in a play, poem or story that reveals a character's thoughts and feelings. When we read a story, sometimes we can see what a character is thinking, but it isn't always so clear. When a writer allows a character to speak in a monologue, we get to see inside a character's head and then we better understand what motivates that character." (Google)
ME: Monologues are a favourite device in contemporary Canadian plays, so much so that playwrights often have trouble creating dialogue between (or often: among) other characters on stage. They talk at each other instead of inter-acting or responding. I still go to courses and workshops and readings and such as well as plays because it's always possible to learn something new or even to have a well-known technique reinforced. If you haven't already noticed, monologues are very important - to the writers, I think, more than to the audiences. I mean, they're not like "To be or not to be".I know playwrights who begin a new play by writing a monologue for each character they envision. It’s an effective method for getting to know their people, getting inside a head, learning (creating) speech patterns and back history. It’s one method, not the only one. Writers are encouraged (by textbooks on how to write a play - or novel) to write biographies of their principals, not much different from a monologue, at that. I’m not going to go into this any further. I bring it up because yesterday I gave a playwriting lab, on Character, at Ryerson University (the Senior Playwrights program) and asked my class to write a monologue and then to share it. I discovered that some of these wannabe playwrights don’t know what a monologue is. They wrote dialogue for two or more people in a dramatic scene.
My fault. I had assumed that everyone knew what a monologue is. Like this blogue.