Writing Challenge: Talk Like a Pirate!

English: Mark Summers ("Cap'n Slappy"...

Mark Summers (“Cap’n Slappy”) and John Baur (“Ol’ Chumbucket”), founders of Talk Like a Pirate Day. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

I hope you knew this already, but today is International Talk Like a Pirate Day, the day when everyone should… talk like a pirate! Arr! (Check out the video on the link above, then stagger on through to the rest of the site. It’s worth it!)

What’s the point of International Talk Like a Pirate Day? The point is, there is no point! It’s all for fun!

Enough o’ this falderal! Today’s challenge is first off, to go around talkin’ like a pirate! Then there’s the writin’ part: ye gotta figger out how ta write like a pirate!

First, I’m gonna direct ye ta this here page on ther website: How to Do It. There you’ll find all sorts of useful tips, like surefire pirate pick-up lines. The wenches tell me they’re “slappin’ good,” or was it good fer gettin’ slapped? Arr, matey! Whatever!

There’s always a challenge when writing a dialect. Do you write out everything phonetically, or do you simply state that the character “sounds like a pirate,” or what?

The best advice I’ve seen is to use vernacular word choices (like “wenches” instead of “women”, or “ye” instead of “you”) and occasional interjections, and sometimes drop in the bit o’ pronunciation, just to remind the reader that this be a pirate ‘n’ not a perfessor. The rest of the time just write it straight, so the reader isn’t bogged down trying to figure out what’s being said.

Whether this is good advice is up to you. I look forward to reading some pirate dialog!

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About Kurt Schweitzer

A former vampire logistics facilitator, past purveyor of Italian-style transportation, and Y2K disaster preventer, I'm currently creating websites, novels and other fictions while reinventing myself. Again.
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One Response to Writing Challenge: Talk Like a Pirate!

  1. Ali says:

    Arrrr! or should I say Aye! 🙂

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