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"Crafting Believable Characters and Engaging Dialogue" with Stephanie Noll

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Online Class

4/18/2018 From 6:30 PM CST to 9:30 PM CST


$49 for members (sign in for member pricing)

Everyone who registers will have access to the class recording for one week.

Want to create complicated, layered characters that will suck your readers into the dream of your story?

When we read good fiction, we are entering a dream, a place where we can spend our time with characters that we long to love, hate, identify with, feel for. You can tell when a story isn’t working; the dream is disrupted, and as readers we may say, “There’s no way that would happen,” or, “That’s not how people talk.” As writers, even if the worlds we create are made up and full of people we’ve never truly met, we want to transport our readers to a place that feels entirely “real.”

This class will look at novel and short story excerpts where characters and dialogue help to create a believable narrative. We’ll examine how the writers of selected works create characters that are complicated and layered, and we’ll talk about how dialogue is so much more than a conversation between characters. We’ll complete writing exercises that give us the opportunity to create characters and dialogue for new or existing work.



  • You want to add layers to your characters.
  • You want more strategies for writing dialogue.



Stephanie Noll studied fiction writing at Texas State University, where she earned her MFA. She is a frequent storyteller at The Story Department, a monthly fundraiser for the non-profit Austin Bat Cave, and has also told stories at Listen to Your Mother, Backyard Story Night, Hyde Park Story Night, and the Tellers. Stephanie has 18 years of teaching experience and works as a senior lecturer in the English department at Texas State where she recently was awarded an Excellence in Teaching award. Stephanie is the director of Old Books for New Teachers, an organization that helps first-year teachers build classroom libraries. She has written a novel about a standardized test cheating scandal at an inner-city Houston high school.





$49 members (sign in for member pricing)

$109 nonmembers

Before purchasing, please read all policies as noted below and on our Classes page and Online Classes page.

Registration will close on Wednesday, April 18, at 5 p.m. If your browser has difficulty with our website store, or if you prefer to mail in a check, click here for a class registration form. The document provides instructions on where to mail it.

Once a purchase has been made, tickets are not refundable and registration cannot be transferred to a different class or event. No exceptions will be made. If you purchase a ticket and then find you cannot attend, someone else can attend in your stead. Simply contact us at or 512-499-8914 and let us know so that we can update the class roster.



Our classes offer a combination of lecture and practical exercises, determined by the individual instructor, on focused aspects of the craft and business of writing. Your fellow participants will come from a range of writing experience, from beginners to people with MFA degrees and published books. WLT instructors, participants, and administrators all work together to create a welcoming, supportive environment.

If you haven't taken a class with us in recent years, feel free to give us a call at 512-499-8914 if you'd like to discuss whether our programming is the right fit for your needs.


This project is supported in part by the Cultural Arts Division of the City of Austin Economic Development Department. Visit Austin at

Writers' League of Texas classes and workshops are also funded in part by the Texas Commission on the Arts - Investing in a Creative Texas. For more information, go to


This project is also supported in part by an award from the National Endowment for the Arts. To find out more about how National Endowment for the Arts grants impact individuals and communities, visit