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

Filter by
Sorted by
Tagged with
0
votes
0answers
20 views

What's the correct punctuation for text between direct speech? [duplicate]

I've had to proof some work recently and have come across several different styles for punctuating words between speech – some from writers, some from editors – which has made me doubt what I think is ...
-1
votes
0answers
40 views

Actions of speaking and non-speaking persons within dialogue

I'm a little confused about action within dialogue—esp. when it's a 2nd character—because I see it written different ways. I often combine everything in one paragraph, but I'm not sure if it's always ...
0
votes
1answer
54 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 ...
1
vote
1answer
47 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 said. "She said" isn't ...
0
votes
1answer
45 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 ...
0
votes
3answers
57 views

Punctuating dialogue interrupted by speaker?

When a speaker briefly interrupts their own dialogue, then resumes in the same paragraph, how do you punctuate the interruption? I know that, when it doesn't halt speech (i.e. dashes outside quotes), ...
2
votes
0answers
86 views

“Say” and “said” as transitive and intransitive verbs

I have an interesting question. Is "say" a transitive verb in the case of direct/reported speech? I understand that it can be a transitive verb in cases like "She said the phrase." or "She says the ...
1
vote
1answer
34 views

What is the name of the literary technique/device used where the reader is only shown one side of a dialogue?

What is the literary device used when there is a dialogue but only one speaker's side is heard/shown to the reader/audience. And how can I write this in a way that it is clear that although this ...
0
votes
1answer
72 views

What is the Implied Meaning Behind when someone answers a Question with “Because.”

I was watching Season 3 of "The West Wing"(# the Greatest show on TV). Episode 9: Bartlet for America. The premise is that Leo McGarry, the White House Chief-Of-Staff is And he discusses his ...
0
votes
1answer
69 views

Is it grammatical to have a continued description?

I told him, “Sure I would,” and left. Not sure what the technical term for this is, but I see it basically as the equivalent of continued dialogue. Can I do this?
1
vote
0answers
15 views

Is this a dialogue tag?

Lately, I've been pondering about this question. First of all, we already know that dialogue tags consist of a noun or a pronoun followed by a verb like "said," and "ask." "Like this one," I ...
1
vote
0answers
26 views

Can this be considered a dialogue tag?

Lately, I've been pondering about this question. First of all, we already know that dialogue tags consist of a noun or a pronoun followed by a verb like "said," and "ask." "Like this one," I ...
0
votes
0answers
19 views

Is it grammatically correct to omit a comma after dialogue ending in an ellipsis? [duplicate]

I know that Grammarly isn't always correct but before tonight, I didn't know punctuation directly after an ellipsis was grammatically correct, even in special circumstances such as dialogue. Unless ...
1
vote
0answers
16 views

Commas and conversational clauses

I'm editing an article, and a piece of dialogue is giving me some trouble. You were practically a co-owner you’d been there so long. Is this written correctly, or would a comma break up those two ...
0
votes
0answers
58 views

Should I capitalise short phrases of dialogue in the middle of a sentence?

He chanted "activate" to activate his powers. or He chanted "Activate" to activate his powers. This question is specifically for short phrases, not entire sentences.
2
votes
1answer
77 views

How do I clarify to readers that the bolded dialogue question is a rhetorical question?

Two characters, Scythe Master and Claudia, are having a conversation in this book I'm translating. The first speaker is Scythe. (Bolded part is what I'm 87% sure is a rhetorical question, based on ...
0
votes
1answer
630 views

What does it mean by the phrase “not my story to tell”

I recently heard the phrase in the season 3 of Blindspot series. One of the characters used this phrase: Well, if i knew it, i'd swear that i'd tell you, but it's not my story to tell, so, sorry. ...
1
vote
1answer
55 views

Citing Multiple paragraphs MLA

Had a quick question about how I should cite with multiple paragraphs (MLA). Here is how the text appears in the source (The Great Gatsby): 'An Oxford man!' He was incredulous. 'Like hell he is!...
2
votes
2answers
31 views

Help with dialogue tags! [closed]

Should the sentence be: "What is this?" The man demanded. OR "What is this?" The man said demandingly. I was under the impression that you needed to have 'said' in the sentence for it to be proper. ...
0
votes
1answer
63 views

Formatting English Translation in Foreign Dialogue

This short paragraph of German dialogue needs to be translated into English within a larger work: “Zurück bleiben! Fenster schliessen!” Stay back! Close the window! shouted the man on the roof. ...
1
vote
1answer
55 views

Can action tags be punctuated like dialogue tags? [closed]

I have a habit of using action tags in the same way as dialogue tags. Example: "I don't know," she said. "I think not," he scratched his chin thoughtfully. "This could have gone better," ...
2
votes
0answers
101 views

Why do we structure dialogue/direct speech the way that we do?

I hate how we format dialogue. I believe convention has gotten too heavy and we need to think a little more about logic. That being said, my question, to be more specific, is asking about labels for ...
0
votes
1answer
50 views

Should use third person or first person when describing someone's dialogue

Lets say I am describing the interaction between me and a friend (lets say John), to another person (Mike). If the interaction consists of John saying to me 'I don't know the answer, but you do'. How ...
1
vote
1answer
129 views

Can you add a colon before quotations instead of a comma? [duplicate]

Is it possible to add a colon instead of a comma before quotations? Like this: Person A said: "Blah Blah Blah." Not as in theatrical performance, but as used in an story.
1
vote
0answers
166 views

Is it correct to capitalize a pronoun's first letter after a punctuation mark in a dialogue?

"I wonder," I said to myself, "if there's a punctuation mark at the end of a dialogue, should I capitalize a pronoun's first letter?" "I don't know," someone in my mind said, "should we?" "Should we?...
7
votes
4answers
971 views

What does an ellipsis followed by an exclamation mean?

I'm confused about how to use "...!" in writing. Currently, I'm writing a fiction story with a character who has been critically injured. I got this question while typing out this: "I won't die yet....
1
vote
0answers
35 views

Relationship between topics and speech acts/dialogue acts in a sentence

I am still ambiguous about the relationship between topics and speech acts/dialogue acts in a sentence. Are the topics selected as conditional on speech acts/dialogue acts (or vice versa) in a ...
4
votes
1answer
235 views

What does “two-meal” mean in “There's nothing that could get him away from that two-meal town.”?

It's a quote from the movie "The Godfather II", Tom and Frankie's scene: Frankie: Did my brother go back? Tom: Yeah, don't worry. Frankie: He's ten time tougher than me-- my brother. He's ...
-2
votes
3answers
9k views

Asgard is not a place, it's a people

In the movie Thor Ragnarok the sentence Asgard is not a place, it's a people. is used by multiple characters multiple times but shouldn't it be " Asgard is not a place, it's the people" Am I ...
3
votes
3answers
130 views

Quotation marks and types of dialogue

I'm editing the autobiography of a German-American woman who grew up during Hitler's reign. There are several instances where she uses quotation marks in a way that I'm not sure is correct. 1. Life ...
1
vote
4answers
567 views

What's a verb that means “to say something in a singing way”

Imagine a dentist telling a small child to "open wide." He might "sing" it rather than say it, maybe by drawing out "wide" into two syllables, the first having a higher pitch than the second. You ...
0
votes
1answer
235 views

Position of comma relative to quotation marks: “You're wrong”,… vs. “You're wrong,” [duplicate]

Below, I have written two sentences. Can you comment on the positioning of the first comma in each case. Are both sentences correct? "You're wrong", Eddie replied. "You're wrong," Eddie replied, "...
2
votes
1answer
943 views

What do the parentheses inside quotation marks mean in this Dickens quote?

Miss Havisham had seen him as soon as I, and was (like everybody else) afraid of him. She made a strong attempt to compose herself, and stammered that he was as punctual as ever. "As punctual as ...
0
votes
0answers
36 views

How to punctuate interrupted dialogue [duplicate]

What is the best way to punctuate interrupted dialogue? I have seen it done like this, but I am not sure if it is correct. "In my opinion the best w--" "Nobody is interested in your opinion," Fred ...
1
vote
1answer
660 views

Punctuation: Dialogue that trails off and picks up again

How would you correctly punctuate dialogue that trails off, but then picks up again? A: "Something about the way she smells ..." The man breathed in deep, a smile spreading across his face. "... ...
0
votes
1answer
1k views

Reasking in answer to “How are you?”

sorry for probably similar questions were already asked but I can't find exactly this: If I'm greeted by "How are you?", should I answer with "Fine, thanks, and you" as school books usually suggest? ...
0
votes
1answer
327 views

How should punctuation be used in dialogues that end in “is all he/she/I said”?

In dialogues that are like the following ones, should the comma follow the dialogues like it does in dialogues that end with "she/he/I said"? "I'm coming home," she said. (Comma follows dialogue.) ...
9
votes
2answers
2k views

The meaning of a short excerpt of dialog from the “La-La Land” movie [closed]

I came across the following dialog while watching La-La Land in English with subtitles: Mia: How’d you get on the lot? Seb: I basically just hauled ass past the guard gates. I think I have 20 ...
-1
votes
1answer
558 views

suggestions on word-choice for “the smell of roses” [closed]

Can someone suggest another way to say "the smell of roses in the air", please.Is "the aroma of roses" mean the same?
3
votes
1answer
4k views

How should I format whispered dialog?

How do would you write out character whispering in a narrative story, would you use italics, parantheses, maybe dependent on variety of styles?
1
vote
1answer
114 views

Syntactic structure of a ''contracted'' question [closed]

I'm a teacher and I'm preparing the simple dialogues for my students. Here's one of them: Hi! Hello! How are things? Could be better. You? Pretty good. May I shorten the response ...
1
vote
1answer
3k views

Should I capitalize after an exclamation in dialogue? [duplicate]

I'm trying to update punctuation in an older children's book, and I can't find an answer to my question regarding the punctuation in this passage: “Well, well! if we wait there until summer comes, ...
2
votes
1answer
25k views

How is “but of course” different to just “of course”?

I've seen in writing and on screen the phrase "but of course" used as a stand alone sentence. If one were to substitute just "of course" would the meaning change?
3
votes
1answer
3k views

onomatopoeia for taking a deep breath before speaking

I'm writing a comic, and a character is about to ask another character for help, but it's taken her a lot of effort to be able to ask for help. So, before she finally asks she takes a deep breath and ...
1
vote
1answer
1k views

How do you paragraph dialogue when multiple characters are acting?

So if I'm correct, you start a new paragraph in dialogue every time a new character is the one focused on. So if character A says something and then does an action that's all one paragraph, but if ...
0
votes
2answers
853 views

How do I write dialog where list items are prefixed with letters?

I am a little stymied by this. I have dialog with a list of reasons in it that prefixes each reason with a letter of the alphabet. How am I suppose to write this, as spoken by a character in a book? ...
1
vote
1answer
213 views

Word for when a writer uses alternate spelling and grammar to immitate a dialect

What is the word for when a writer spells words of a character's dialogue differently for a character in order to express an accent or dialect? I think it starts with a 'd'.
2
votes
2answers
2k views

Does the word “brownie” have the same implication as the N-Word?

I was watching the latest episodes of The X-Files a couple of weeks ago and in one of the episode a middle aged white man driving down the road in Texas stares at a Mid Eastern/Asian guy at a traffic ...
0
votes
1answer
518 views

Punctuation for nested quotes at the end of a sentence

This is something I've gone back and forth on with a couple of writer friends and nobody is ever really sure what the correct punctuation format is, or whether there really is a format that's ...
0
votes
1answer
195 views

I don't understand drama “Madam Secretary” dialogue

guys. I am whatching American Drama "Madam Secretary" season1, episode 13. And there are some dialogue I can't understand. Pat: It's a little fancy for a civil servant, but then, you came from a ...