Helen (heleninwales) wrote,

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In which I discover that I say, "Yes. Right. Yes. Yes," an awful lot

I am still writing up the BA Education dissertation. One of the biggest jobs is typing up the two interviews I recorded. I have a poor short term memory, so in the end I discovered that the best way to tackle it was to listen to about 3 or 4 words, stop recording, type words, listen to next 3 or 4 words, rinse and repeat for hours until finished. The result has been something of a revelation.

I've actually known for years that I'm an overlapper when it comes to talking rather than a turn-taker, but even when I'm desperately trying to keep quiet and let my interviewee speak, I can't help chipping in every so often. Or, well, a lot really.

Anyway, in case anyone out there thought that dialogue in fiction was anything like real dialogue, I can assure you it's not. Neither, actually, is dialogue in plays and on TV. This is what real dialogue is like...

Me: Right, we're nearly at the end now. Erm, so… what would you say your ambitions were with the Welsh? You're obviously not still quite happy with where you are, you want to…

E: Yes. It's improved a lot, erm, er, since I've been doing the Llanllawen and the Lleisiau'r Llan. Erm, and I think… I don't know how or when it does improve, it's just that looking back from where I am now, looking backwards, I think, 'Gosh! I couldn't have done this a couple of years ago.'

Me: Mmmm.

E: So, somehow or other it is, erm, improving and if it carries on like that, erm… I… There are gaps in what I'm able to say, how I'm able to join into a conversation. Erm, I'm not quite sure what the gaps are yet, erm, it's not just vocabulary, it's having, right on the tip of my tongue, the right sentences.

Me: Hmmm.

E: Erm, to…

Me: Yeah.

E: …to say. I find it's easier, I find to go into a shop, say, or into a… somewhere to, and start off the conversation, because I'm saying what I want to say. Then somebody else asks you a question or… And that's what I find more difficult...

Me: Keeping it going…

E: ...because I've got… I know what I'm trying to say but I've… then… erm, it's that instant translation. It's all right if you sort of think, Oh! Oh, yes I could say this and even go in and start off…

Me: Yes.

E: …it's the follow on.

Me: Have… have you ever sort of planned out what you want to say…

E: Yes.

Me: … even to the extent of almost writing your own little script or…

E: Yes.

Me: Yes. And then you've got like your little speech to…

E: Yes.

Me: Yes. Yes.

You will notice that E (also female) has an overlapping speaking style too, so the whole thing looks disjointed as we constantly reinforce one another. And yet when you listen to the recording, it all sounds perfectly natural! :)
Tags: ba education
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