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Questions tagged [dialogue]

Questions about authored conversations between two or more people as found in books, plays, or films. Please use the "conversations" tag for natural spoken conversations

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Choosing between That and Who [migrated]

Which one of the following sentences is more appropriate (from both grammatical and daily conversational points of view)? I love things and people "who are beautiful. I love things and people &...
Arash2020's user avatar
1 vote
0 answers
55 views

Do I use a quotation mark at the end of a blockquote of dialogue?

"Sing it to me," said Jane. I answered, "Here goes: Row, row, row your boat Gently down the stream. Merrily, merrily, Merrily, merrily, Life is but a dream. "That was nice," ...
Celia Betty's user avatar
0 votes
2 answers
74 views

Quotation marks vs colon & comma vs dash (dialogue)

I'm trying to write the following dialogue in one sentence and here's what I have: If she asks "Why?" tell her "Something came up." If she asks: Why?-tell her: Something came up. ...
Safina's user avatar
  • 1
0 votes
1 answer
78 views

What punctuation is used to indicate paraphrased dialogue?

I'm translating a prose work about an epic poem. Instead of quoting dialogues in the original verse form, the author sometimes paraphrases them. What is the standard punctuation for such paraphrased ...
Maya's user avatar
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1 vote
1 answer
94 views

Sequence of tenses in dialogue: why is "No, can't say I had" used in response to "Perhaps you didn't notice?"?

From the movie "No Time to Die": Nomi: The world's moved on since you retired, Commander Bond. Perhaps you didn't notice? Bond: No, can't say I had." Why did Bond use "had" ...
moskit's user avatar
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1 answer
44 views

Meaning of "inspecting the truce" in this context

No matter how many times I watch the SWOR trailer "Return", I can't grasp this interaction: -Bounty hunter peeks at a what seems to be an attractive female. +Eyes front. -Just inspecting ...
Yağız Alp Ersoy's user avatar
0 votes
0 answers
26 views

Punctuating Dialogue That Runs with Sentence [duplicate]

How would I punctuate this line of dialogue? Example 1 (minimal punctuation): Jane handed me the phone with a “here she is” before leaving the room. Example 2: (comma): Jane handed me the phone with a ...
user137928's user avatar
0 votes
1 answer
124 views

Dialogue in the TV series "Billions"

While I was watching the TV series "Billions," there was a dialogue between two people working for Axe Capital. They argue about smart guns and say: (A says smart guns can be a ten-bagger. ...
Grace's user avatar
  • 55
0 votes
1 answer
52 views

How to break a quote with narrative in a single sentence?

In creative writing (US English), what is the most appealing way to insert a bit of narrative within dialog in a single sentence? For example: “The unified kingdom of my childhood,” Lucy hoped to ...
mfrancis's user avatar
-1 votes
1 answer
47 views

How to multi-paragraph quote within quote?

When a speaker's words in dialogue extend to more than one paragraph, we use an opening quotation mark at the beginning of each paragraph and use a closing quotation mark only at the end of the person'...
smq's user avatar
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2 votes
2 answers
104 views

What was the reference to 'federal case' in the movie Air Force One

In the movie Air Force One, there is a scene where the President makes a call to the White House switchboard, Where the operator says Okay, sir. You want to make a federal case out of this, fine by ...
puzzled's user avatar
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0 votes
1 answer
298 views

Should I use a period or comma in the dialogue preceding "nodded" or "gestured"? [duplicate]

Not the first time the question appears. I was wondering about usage of commas and periods in dialogues. Here’s an example from the recent book I chanced upon: “The tea,” she gestured. “Snakes are ...
Alexander Fleming 's user avatar
0 votes
1 answer
81 views

"a square deal from me and most of the breaks"

I was watching The Maltese Falcon and there's a scene when Dundy, a cop, tells Sam Spade (who Dundy thinks may have murdered someone) the following: Well, you know me, Spade. If you did it, or if you ...
Vasting's user avatar
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1 vote
1 answer
93 views

What's it called when, instead of saying 'you,' you say the name of the person you're talking to?

Let's say you're talking to Sarah and you make her upset so you say to her "I would hate to make Sarah upset." Is there a term for using 'Sarah' instead of the usual 'you' here?
Nick's user avatar
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1 vote
1 answer
68 views

Is there a term for the aspect of style where an author indicates who is speaking? [duplicate]

In a novel, for example, imagine the following sentence: "I like chowder", Helen said. What I'm looking for is the highlighted part. There are many different ways that particular sentence ...
dgo's user avatar
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0 answers
33 views

Can I end a quote/dialogue with a colon?

If a character is introducing something, say, a PowerPoint presentation, how should I punctuate their speech? Can I use a colon? For example: "We have proof. Just take a look at this:" He ...
M. Nielsen's user avatar
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0 answers
18 views

Would You Capitalize a Part of Sentence That is After a Dialogue? [duplicate]

This something that I'm very confused about... You see, here is one example of the sentence: I ran ahead and said, "I don't want that," and crashed against a wall. In this sentence, you ...
ZZZ's user avatar
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0 answers
58 views

If there is no reporting verb, would you still use comma in these constructions?

Usually, after a reporting verb, there is bound to be a comma, but what if the constructions are as follow: As if waiting for me to say that one sentence, Cornelia followed up with a request, “Welp, ...
ZZZ's user avatar
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0 votes
1 answer
56 views

Simple Abbreviation Confusion

You know that a lot of words can be abbreviated like: You know -> y'know About -> 'bout Going to -> gonna and much more To be honest, I found one interesting abbreviation: Of course ->...
Gerry Giovan's user avatar
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1 answer
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Sorkin's "Your imagination, like a child, will explode with unrestrained possibilities for adventure." Works so well despite feeling problematic; why? [closed]

I'm going to somewhat but not completely premise my question on the following: the line is likely written or edited by Aaron Sorkin rather than Kevin Falls (Galileo West Wing Season 2 Episode 9 ...
uhoh's user avatar
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0 votes
1 answer
41 views

Is reverberate a dialogue tag? [closed]

Just like the title say and here are the examples: “Took you long enough.” Without warning, her voice reverberated from my side. “Ngh! Phew… Oh no!” A voice reverberated from the crash site and ...
Gerry Giovan's user avatar
1 vote
1 answer
109 views

"brothers in her bag"

in the film The Maltese Falcon (1941) the private detective Miles said "They have brothers in her bag." context: the client, beautiful women Wonderly gave him two Dollar bill and after she ...
Tasnim Alam's user avatar
0 votes
1 answer
340 views

Dialogue with multiple sentences before the “he said”

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? ...
Marie's user avatar
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1 vote
1 answer
200 views

What is the term for the name tags before dialogue in a play?

I remember my professor from years ago providing a specific technical term for the abbreviated name tags in front of dialogue in a play, e.g. So: The Athenians don't just call it a suit, Euthyphro, ...
J Mill's user avatar
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0 votes
1 answer
155 views

How to punctuate overheard dialogue with a noise interrupting it?

How would you punctuate dialogue when it's overheard by others (who only hear it) and when there is a noise that interrupts it? (same as action?) Been flailing about with this but does this look right?...
Sus's user avatar
  • 1
2 votes
3 answers
532 views

A word, gesture or expression for a confident "shrug"

I am trying to look for a word, gesture or expression that represents a state of confident not knowing. So far I am using a shrug for this but when used often it starts to come off as very apathetic ...
FrontEnd's user avatar
  • 1,093
0 votes
1 answer
415 views

What dialogue tag can be used to describe being confused? [closed]

For example; My brother was standing in front of my room. “Are you ok with this?” He huffs. “What do you mean?” [A term that would describe that she is confused]
Ranakkuma Kuma's user avatar
1 vote
0 answers
128 views

Is 'lamented' a dialogue tag? [closed]

In these sentences, "I miss having breakfast every day," he lamented. "I miss having breakfast every day." He lamented. is the first correct? I would say lamented is a dialogue ...
Ge To's user avatar
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2 votes
1 answer
251 views

Is it alright to use logical punctuation?

Since I have been writing, I have been using what I thought was just the British style of punctuation. However, I realised that it is actually called 'logical punctuation'. I have used this style of ...
user422154's user avatar
0 votes
2 answers
100 views

Grammatical correctness of continuing sentences off dialogue tags

The following is a quote from Philip Pullman's 'La Belle Sauvage': "It's a present for her," said Malcolm, and thrust it in among Lyra's blankets. Now, to me, this sentence doesn't really ...
lanf's user avatar
  • 144
1 vote
0 answers
23 views

Dialogue usage uncertainty

Sorry for the vague title! I'm writing a short story and I'm wondering if the below sentence is correct. Should a new paragraph be started when she hears the shout, since it's technically dialogue? Or ...
Poison Ivy's user avatar
1 vote
1 answer
448 views

Meaning of this piece of dialogue in The Call of the Wild?

Here is an excerpt from Chapter 1 of The Call of the Wild by Jack London: Yet his time came, in the end, in the form of a little weazened man who spat broken English and many strange and uncouth ...
Kshitij's user avatar
  • 106
-1 votes
1 answer
51 views

"Brick Mansions" Movie Dialog [closed]

In the script of the movie, it is written "your backing" but I cannot hear that! I hear this: "your back". What is that in fact? The passage of dialog: "Now, with your ...
M. Afrashteh's user avatar
0 votes
0 answers
38 views

English text book - phrase to be used in an example dialogue

I'm in the middle of writing a dialogue for an English text book - a short excerpt from the dialogue is as follows: Coach: Your form is not bad, but you have to work on your strength. Athlete: ...
Ruga's user avatar
  • 1
0 votes
0 answers
48 views

Singleton letters in direct speech

I am writing a scene where one of the characters screams, "H" and "O-H." I want to know the best to indicate that to the reader, that the distinct letters are being pronounced, not ...
Hardik Rajpal's user avatar
0 votes
0 answers
16 views

Capitalization after an internal dialogue prefix tag [duplicate]

Do you capitalize the sentence after an internal dialogue (a.k.a. thought bubble) that uses a prefix tag? That is, in an example like: Will thought, My father must not like me. Or do you do: Will ...
Elliott Slaughter's user avatar
0 votes
1 answer
22 views

Starting a sentence with a past verb?

I am a spanish speaker, and the last night I watched the movie "The Silencing". There, some characters used expressions such as: "Realized I did not like to let animals suffer" In ...
user avatar
8 votes
4 answers
3k views

What type of English is used in the dialogue of the Lord of the Rings movies? [closed]

In the movie The Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers, Elrond speaks to his daughter: "If Aragorn survives this war, you will still be parted. If Sauron is defeated and Aragorn made king and all ...
tired and bored dev's user avatar
1 vote
1 answer
143 views

In direct speech, should there be a comma after the clause but before 'as'?

I have had a peep at similar posts but couldn't find what I was looking for, so apologies if I am repeating a question. Which is correct? "Wow!" gasped Sarah as she spotted the sparkling ...
CatAttack's user avatar
0 votes
0 answers
1k views

Should you use quotation marks when transcribing an interview in which the speakers are identified before each quote?

I apologize if the title is unclear, as I couldn't find a great way to phrase this. What I'm asking is, which of the following would be correct? Interviewer: Good morning, thank you for joining me. ...
will1howell's user avatar
0 votes
1 answer
314 views

Should you start a new paragraph for a new speaker if both speakers are contained in the same quoted passage?

This manuscript quotes a passage from the Bible that has more than one speaker: Job 1:6–7 says: One day, when the angels had gathered around the Lord, and Satan was there with them, the Lord asked,...
Arthur Graves's user avatar
1 vote
0 answers
301 views

How should a numbered list be punctuated within dialogue?

In a story, a character reads aloud a numbered list. What should the punctuation be? I was thinking of treating it like a recitation of a poem or song - indented and italicized. There are 26 items in ...
Alice L.'s user avatar
0 votes
1 answer
230 views

Do you always need commas after dialogue tags and detailed locations?

I have a couple of questions about commas. If you quote a short sentence, can you omit the comma after the dialogue tag as a matter of style? For instance: Whenever I come home, I always say "...
copywriterZ's user avatar
0 votes
0 answers
324 views

Use of 'period' at the end of sentence

I have observed this in some quotes or dialogues that people say 'period.' at the end of their sentence/quote. I wanted to ask why and when is it used
user1170874's user avatar
0 votes
0 answers
357 views

Interrupted quotation in a paragraph

Please help me with the correct usage of capitalisation in an interrupted quotation. For example: Alice yelled, "Get out of here." In the above sentence, the first word under the quotes is ...
Varsha Bansal's user avatar
0 votes
1 answer
91 views

Using "this" or "that" in a sentence

I wondered which term for the below paragraph is correct grammar and whether I should use "this" or "that". Peter kept wondering about everything he had overheard. For the time being, he wanted to ...
Jay29's user avatar
  • 3
1 vote
0 answers
61 views

What would you call parts of dialogue?

As in 'The cat jumped over the dog,' Jack said What would you call the "Jack said" part?
Sam's user avatar
  • 11
0 votes
1 answer
547 views

Positioning of comma when assumptions are added to other people's information, as in "I assume" [duplicate]

In a passage of my book, a character tells another that he's "dead". Now, this scene is quite intense, propping up what seems like an imminent fight. The character being threatened has picked up on ...
A. Kvåle's user avatar
  • 2,147
1 vote
1 answer
2k views

Are dialogue tags after a question capitalized?

When writing dialogue and dialogue tags, I have always asked myself if the tag is a complete sentence. If so, I use a comma and lower case such as: She said, "Bob." "Bob," she ...
Syre Fayne's user avatar
2 votes
1 answer
279 views

What is a word to describe when someone is upset that someone else thinks little of themself?

I'm writing a story and the characters have just got to their love confession and I'm trying to think of a specific word to capture their feeling, but I can't remember it. Character A: "They're not ...
Red 's user avatar
  • 21