Linked Questions

14
votes
4answers
550 views

How do you vary dialogue within stories? [duplicate]

How do you vary dialogue within stories? I often find myself writing "'sentence/dialogue' said character", and it sometimes gets really repetitive. How is this managed? These are the only words that ...
2
votes
5answers
531 views

Writing compelling dialogue [duplicate]

I try to avoid repeating the prosaic "he said", "she said" structure as much as possible when writing dialogue. But I think overload of complex descriptors "he articulated", "he intoned" is ...
16
votes
6answers
6k views

Dialog, just what's the best way to write it?

I've come across the following conventions: "What’s this for?" asked Jake. Sue replied, "None of your business." He shrugged his shoulders. "Well, it looks darned funny sitting here." "It’s ...
10
votes
4answers
8k views

Why do writers use “said” instead of “asked” when someone asks a question?

I often see writers use "said" instead of "asked" when their character asks a question. e.g. From The Hobbit: “Where else should I be?” said the wizard Is it a mistake that hasn't been caught by ...
6
votes
4answers
10k views

Is it correct to use verbs like “sighed” and “laughed” as dialogue tags?

In other words, is it correct to write something like this: "Oh," he laughed. "Sorry, I'm not sure what's with me today." (Every time I see something like this, I think: "...
8
votes
2answers
26k views

Alternative word for “she”

I am writing about a female person. I noticed most of my sentences start with "she". Is there a way to avoid using this pronoun too many times, and use an alternative word instead? I have tried ...
7
votes
1answer
5k views

When to use the character's name and when to use she/he?

This is the first short story where I'm using actual names for the characters. Here is a sample: "Sorry for the question," Jun said. "But why don' you have friends?" Ling glanced at him, then ...
2
votes
4answers
1k views

How much repetition is too much repetition?

This is a question that'd been bothering me for a while. Here's an example: My heart racing, I wriggled to the edge of the bed and fumbled for Travis' hand. Just make sure to hold onto it, he'd ...
1
vote
4answers
996 views

Is it necessary to use words like “said”, “asked,” etc in dialog?

I am writing a novel. I'm not sure if the below sentence structure is correct. I have not used any word like said/replied/asked. He was looking at the painting. “You do not have to believe me. I will ...
3
votes
4answers
587 views

Attributives in dialogue

I normally stick with "he said" and "she said" to keep things simple and transparent to the reader but wondering about questions. Is "she asked" and "he asked" appropriate when a character asks a ...
3
votes
3answers
1k views

How many times should I use the word “said” in one page?

When writing fiction and dialogue tags, I find myself using the word "said" approximately 1-1.5 times a page (or every 250 words or so), and the word "asked" slightly more. What is (around) the ...
2
votes
2answers
101 views

Advice on how to beat word repetition in dialogue [duplicate]

Long story short: I default to simple words like "Said" in dialogue much too often. I'm hesitant to abuse the thesaurus due to advice I've been given, as well. Slightly longer version: When I'm ...