If I were to describe a sudden sound, in this example: Boom! Were I to put it in speech marks: "Boom!" Just like in a dialogue, or to do something else, in that case what?

  • 2
    Unless someone is saying, “Boom”, don’t put it in quotes. – Jim May 17 '16 at 19:37
  • Alright, but if we say the sound is made of a meteor hitting the ground, I should use some kind of punctuation right? – Fine-ish May 17 '16 at 19:50
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    You might choose to put that in italics: Boom! The meteor cratered into the ground producing a shock wave that knocked him to the ground. – Jim May 17 '16 at 19:55
  • "Bang!" went the tire. is perfectly valid. – Hot Licks Nov 6 '18 at 18:22
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    @HotLicks I tried looking for examples where the object making the noise is referred to. Here are three examples that refute your comment: 1, 2, and this book intentionally leaves out the quotation marks in between other segments of speech. This book is in favour, but that does refer to a person making the noise, rather than an inanimate object. (I had to shorten the URLs because otherwise the comment would be over the character limit.) – ahorn Nov 7 '18 at 7:43

Quotation marks should not be used for emphasis, only to indicate something that is spoken or quoted.

  • What should be used for emphasis? – herisson May 17 '16 at 20:50
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    Italics, as Jim said. – ahorn May 17 '16 at 20:57
  • @sumelic If you can't use italics, bold or underline; I'd suggest using * or _ "around" the emphasized text... It's often used in plain text-files for emphasis. Strictly speaking; / = italics, *= bold and _ = underscored; but I think most prefer to use either * or _, and then as just "emphasized". So putting Boom! between two * should work... – Baard Kopperud May 17 '16 at 23:45
  • @BaardKopperud that only applies to a coding context, not a WYSIWIG context. – ahorn May 18 '16 at 11:40
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    Uh, the quotation marks are used to indicate the sound made by something. Just because it's not human doesn't mean it can't be quoted. – Hot Licks Nov 7 '18 at 4:00

and if you're trying to personify something like a cupboard door swinging you could creatively use "squeak!" instead of squeak! to give it more charecter...But thats an exception.

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