Usually when writing dialogue, you write it as such:

“I am so glad it’s raining,” said John.

However, is it acceptable standard to write MULTIPLE sentences before the said tag? As in:

“How are you? I’m so glad it’s raining,” said John.

I could have sworn you can only put one sentence before the said tag.

  • 1
    Do what you like, it's your language, it's your writing. So long as what you write expresses what you want to express there are no 'rules' to pay attention to. In dialogue the reader just needs a hint, now and then, which of the 'actors' in a scene is speaking - and there are plenty of highly-regarded published works of fiction where even that can be difficult to figure out. Oh, and this question might better be asked over at writing.stackexchange.com, it's probably off-topic here. Nov 16, 2021 at 6:22
  • 2
    No, you can do many. The convention is to signal a new speaker with a new paragraph. See David Foster Wallace, Infinite Jest, for great punctuation of long dialogues.
    – Xanne
    Nov 16, 2021 at 6:25
  • Since knowing who the speaker is is usually pretty important, it doesn't make sense to delay the speech tag too long. But there's no 'one quoted sentence only' rule as such. Nov 16, 2021 at 14:10

1 Answer 1


Yes, it is acceptable - and it is still clear that John is the one talking.

You can also do it like this:

'How are you?' asked John. 'I'm so glad it's raining.'

You may also find this to be a useful reference: How to punctuate dialogue

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