Playwright Penny Penniston has penned a new paperback: it’s called Talk the Talk: A Dialogue Workshop for Scriptwriters, and it’ll be published by Michael Wiese Productions next month—shortly before Penniston’s new play, Spin, receives its world premiere from Theater Wit, whose artistic director, Jeremy Wechsler, just happens to be married to Penniston.

“Dialogue puts conversation in motion. Great dialogue moves like a great athlete; it is nimble, precise, and powerful. It commands attention, yet it feels effortless in its execution. . . . If we want our dialogue to move like an athlete, then we must train like an athlete,” says Penniston, whose credits include The Roaring Girl ( and The Coarse Acting Show (, presented by Shakespeare’s Motley Crew in 1999 and 2001 respectively. (Reader critic Adam Langer praised The Roaring Girl for its “memorably humorous characters” and “witty, bawdy dialogue”; Reader critic Brian Nemtusak described The Coarse Acting Show as “an affectionately lacerating take on the Chicago storefront scene.”

Penniston’s talking points, listed in a press release, include “the physics principle that every scriptwriter should know about,” “how to use dialogue to illustrate differing status among characters,” “how to use dialogue to build tension and shift power between characters,” “what Barak [sic] Obama understands about great dialogue,” and “what scriptwriters should learn from spies,” as well as an analysis of how great dialogue makes great movies (her examples include The Graduate and His Girl Friday).