Let’s Talk Dialogue – Part 4 – 5 Ways Punctuation Makes It Perfect!

Let’s Talk Dialogue – Part 4 – 5 Ways Punctuation Makes It Perfect!

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by Anthony Ehlers

If you want to know more about dialogue, you will love:

  1. Let’s Talk Dialogue – How To Shape And Structure Spoken Words
  2. Let’s Talk Dialogue – Do You Say It Out Loud Or Keep It To Yourself?
  3. Let’s Talk Dialogue – 6 Ways Emphasis Can Change Meaning In Dialogue
  4. Let’s Talk Dialogue – 5 Ways Punctuation Makes It Perfect!
  5. Let’s Talk Dialogue – How Social Media Has Changed Dialogue

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  1. Bethanie

    I promise I am not trying to be picky, but in the U.S., when using quotation marks, a double quotation (“) is used at the beginning and end in every dialogue part within the book. A single quotaton (‘) is used at the beginning and end of dialogue within dialogue. In other words, if the person who is speaking, quotes someone else within their dialogue, that is when the single quotation (‘) is used.

    An example– “Remember what Mike said, ‘Never say never.’ I really miss him.” A lump formed in Ronnie’s throat.
    Steve felt the same way, “How could Mike just disappear like that? It’s as if he doesn’t want to be found. Man, don’t ever do that. If something is wrong, tell me. I don’t want to lose my other best friend.”
    Ronnie and Steve sat on the deck looking into the woods hoping Mike would walk out of them, just like he walked in.
    Ronnie lightly punched Steve’s shoulder, “Don’t worry, man. I’m not going anywhere. We’ll keep looking for Mike tomorrow. It’s turned too dark tonight. It’s like the earth just swallowed him up.”
    Both sat wondering, not knowing that is exactly what happened.

  2. fereshte hashemi

    Thank you

  3. Writers Write

    Bethanie, we use UK English in South Africa. Our punctuation follows that style.

  4. Anthony Ehlers

    Hi Bethanie, thanks for the feedback. I think, more than anything, writers should be consistent. If we’re using double quote marks for speech, it’s fine as long as we use it throughout the book. I used single quotes because it leaves less marks on the page, and it looks cleaner. (Enjoyed your extract though!)

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