I am writing a novel and I am trying to find the best write a person being interrupted in speech by something they see. Example is below: Fahad is the person talking and as he talks he sees a vicious storm coming.

“The engine is not here so it will be a waste of …of …” something had caught Fahad’s attention. He focused his concerned gaze towards the north for several seconds. “Brace yourselves! I see a dust storm coming!” he warned.

Um, I'm not sure if this is it is right or wrong. So I guess I'm looking for verification of punctuation and format. There are a few articles I read in the past that indicated saying something in this format is wrong. "and he ...where are" with a space before the three dots after the last word. Somethings I read there shouldn't be spaces, "and he...where are." and something Ive read should be spaces after and before, "and he … where are." Thanks folks.

  • Seems fine to me (I'd lose the "for several seconds" but that's irrelevant to the question). Can you explain (by editing the question) what you think is wrong with the example? Commented Jan 11, 2020 at 15:58

1 Answer 1


Three periods are the standard way of showing a broken sentence...

For action, the dialogue needs to flow quickly and smoothly. Stay in the present tense, be concise and de-emphasise the narrator.

In addition, demonstrate the character's state of mind through their dialogue or actions.

"The engine is not here so it will be a waste of..." Something caught his attention and he frowned, gazing towards the north. "Brace yourselves! A dust storm is coming!" he warned.

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