Originally posted on This Craft Called Writing
Rule #1 – Dialogue should never be pointless
When your characters speak they come alive. Or at least they should do. If they are Mr or Mrs Boring and have little of relevance to say, if they are inclined to lecture, if they live in a vacuum or have no personality, then chances are your reader will not care if they live or die or dance the fandango stark naked.
The point of dialogue – as with everything else in your narrative – is to further the story. And by that I don’t mean you have to be dropping major plot points into every conversation; it’s there to enrich your fictional world by showing your reader something about character, providing texture or pace, and to build tension and drama...