Questions tagged [dialogue]

He said, she said, or what your characters are saying.

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In first person narrative, how do i use shakily, fear and trembling in story writing

Who's this?” She barked. My heart was pounding beneath my chest as I struggled to breath well under tension. One thing my aunt hated was me talking to anyone at all, especially boys. How would she ...
Comfort Jones 's user avatar
4 votes
2 answers
553 views

In dialogue, what is the best way to show an action as well as dialogue from two different characters?

I'm writing a book, and there's a point I've come up to where there's an action, plus dialogue from two different characters. Here's the excerpt: “What do you want for her?” Dane asked. The man ...
therandomizer12's user avatar
1 vote
2 answers
131 views

How do you describe someone who's talking while brushing their teeth?

I don't think there's a specific word for that, so how would you describe it? The scene is that someone shouts something while they're in the bathroom, brushing their teeth. It's still intelligible, ...
Flibidi's user avatar
  • 11
0 votes
2 answers
81 views

If a quotation makes up all of a person's speech does it still need to be in its own quote marks?

I have the following speech in a book I'm designing: Seeing him hesitate, she said lightly, ‘“‘There’s both meat and music here,’ quoth the dog as he ate the piper’s bag”!’ Essentially someone is ...
Daniel James Smith's user avatar
2 votes
1 answer
77 views

How to correctly portray sign language between multiple characters

I am writing a book where one of the main characters only uses sign language to communicate, and all of the speaking characters communicate using ASL whilst also speaking aloud at the same time. Is ...
Dyllan's user avatar
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10 votes
8 answers
5k views

How do I write a sexist narrator without coming off as sexist myself?

I'm writing a script for a short movie, but I'm not sure if the introduction sounds clear enough. For context, the narrator is supposed to believe in "old-fashioned" values. Specifically ...
FMurphy's user avatar
  • 101
13 votes
3 answers
5k views

How do I properly present dialogue in a scene with two female characters?

When writing a conversation between two female characters, I found myself using their names over and over instead of using pronouns. If I use 'she' for both of them, it's confusing to read because it ...
Elle. H.'s user avatar
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2 votes
3 answers
159 views

How do I write a story in which no one can understand each other?

I have this story I want to write where there's different species that each speak their own different language, but none of them can understand each other at all. Then the main character comes and ...
Violet Nightblaze's user avatar
2 votes
3 answers
119 views

What's the best way to write a 2-person story, primarily involving interaction?

I am writing a short story that only has 2 characters, and is written in the third person. I am deciding between script-type writing: Character 1: "Wow! these are my words!" He smiles ...
Cybertine's user avatar
1 vote
2 answers
118 views

How do you write the word 'wow' as if someone is dragging the sounds out longer than normal?

I am writing about a person daydreaming. She is looking into space and says the word 'wow'. How can I write it to convey she is dragging the word out?
Jane Miller's user avatar
1 vote
3 answers
83 views

Language of other countries

I write the little girl calls her grandmother Bunica Rose. The father calls her Bunica Rose also. In the narrative, I use the words, Grandmother Rose. Is this appropriate to do?Will my reading get ...
Jane Miller's user avatar
0 votes
1 answer
108 views

How to create dialogue in a book?

This question may sound strange to you, but I am starting to write my book for the first time, so I hope that everyone will understand me. My question is that I do not know how to write the dialogue ...
Анна Орищук's user avatar
2 votes
3 answers
191 views

Can my narrator's thoughts be in the same paragraph as another character's dialogue?

I'm writing a scene where my narrator (character A) is listening and reacting internally to character B, who is giving a long-winded explanation of something. Though is is a problem I run into ...
Meg's user avatar
  • 23
1 vote
2 answers
147 views

Does every piece of dialogue need a dialogue tag like "she said"?

If I quote what a person says and use "she said" after the speech, do I have to state that again if I add another part of the speech after "she said"? For example: "It's a ...
Kiki's user avatar
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0 votes
1 answer
134 views

What to use for internal thoughts, single quotes or italics?

When writing internal thoughts within a larger body of text, is it more correct to write it like ... 'She's totally lying.' ... or ... She's totally lying....
Elias Sampson's user avatar
0 votes
1 answer
88 views

"Enid Blyton" way to concede a point? Traditional upper class public school slang referred

I need to change a line in a play from American slang to English. Context - Character is uncertain about something. Others convince her with can you really see X happening? or Y?" The character ...
Thactor's user avatar
0 votes
0 answers
33 views

Do I start a new paragraph after someone is finished speaking? [duplicate]

If I were to be writing a paper in first person and someone other than the main character says something and then no one else says anything, should I start a new paragraph or keep writing in the same ...
Hugo's user avatar
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0 votes
0 answers
48 views

How to convey the voice of an entity that fluidly switches from a single mind to multiple minds?

I am writing a sci-fi story. One of the character(s) is an intelligent fungus that spreads throughout an exoplanet as, biologically, a single individual. My sources of inspiration for this character ...
Geeky Guy's user avatar
  • 113
2 votes
3 answers
88 views

Format for writing extended dialogue

Is it acceptable to write dialogue in a book in screenplay format? (writing the name of the speaker and a colon, followed by the text)
Eni's user avatar
  • 53
0 votes
2 answers
129 views

How do I write dialogue separated with 'said' in the middle? [duplicate]

I'm studying for a test and don't know which one of the two following bits of dialogue is correct, and I haven't been able to find the answer online since I don't know what it is called. "Hello,&...
Vihaan Kaustuv's user avatar
0 votes
1 answer
55 views

What is the proper formatting of type and quote marks when the main character talks aloud to himself, to someone else, or has internal dialogue?

I am authoring a novel. The main character interacts with others in oral conversation and will also have internal dialogue with himself, during the same conversation. Or he will talk aloud to an ...
abluepelican's user avatar
0 votes
0 answers
51 views

Am I overdoing it with the em dashes here?

I wrote two versions of the last paragraph for my scene (I included additional context since it also has an em dash). I need help deciding if the second version has too many em dashes and if I should ...
pink's user avatar
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1 vote
0 answers
56 views

Selectively mute character where language is a barrier

I have a mc that speaks only mandarin and is taken in by pirates that are mostly English speakers. He didn't speak much before being taken by them. So how would I write a character that is basically ...
E. Drake's user avatar
5 votes
2 answers
153 views

How should I include the sentence that a character would've said if they weren't interrupted in a screenplay?

I'm writing a screenplay with a scene were characters interrupt each other frequently. I think including the lines a character would've said if they weren't interrupted could help the actors and ...
SlowlySwift's user avatar
0 votes
3 answers
100 views

Different styles of narrative. Should you stick to the norm when starting out?

I noticed that many authors use different ways of conveying dialogue, from conventional to unquoted ramblings mixed with explanatory sentencing. Are these types of artistic license with punctuation ...
Lucas Avigliano's user avatar
1 vote
3 answers
160 views

How do I make my writing flow?

I'm in the skeleton stage, but to get into the rhythm of writing, I write short stories every few days. Upon reviewing them, I've realised that unless I am specifically aiming for abstract and vivid ...
BubbleQueen's user avatar
0 votes
2 answers
131 views

How to provide translations, moods, and registry in multilanguage dialog within an narration in English?

I am starting a serious writing project (a novel book from a story I once drafted as a TV show; I am not a script writer either). Furthermore I decided to write in English, which is not my native ...
Carlos Eugenio Thompson Pinzón's user avatar
2 votes
2 answers
180 views

How would the "one good member" of an evil organization/culture see themselves?

I have a character that is the stereotypical "token good member of an evil organization". The organization is a brutal social darwinist one that sees nothing wrong with killing people and ...
user2352714's user avatar
  • 4,685
0 votes
1 answer
79 views

How do you handle "mid-word pauses" during dialogues in novels?

How do you handle "mid-word pauses" during dialogues in novels? I rarely see it being done in novels, so I am not sure what are the various ways to format it. Could you tell me the most ...
Sayaman's user avatar
  • 14.9k
2 votes
5 answers
200 views

Is using diverse verbs on action beats to tag speech frowned upon?

Watching a video from an editor yesterday, she said authors should refrain from using too many verbs on action beats, instead relying mostly on "said" and "asked". I think it is ...
Mindwin Remember Monica's user avatar
0 votes
2 answers
103 views

Length of flashbacks during a dialogue and how to handle it?

Sometimes, you have two characters talking to one another and then as a character is about to describe what happened to the past, a flashback can be seen, and this is done in movies often. Now, I am ...
Sayaman's user avatar
  • 14.9k
6 votes
5 answers
3k views

How to write a character who's better than you at sounding professional and doublespeak

I have a character who is an expert at using language to his advantage. Both in terms of doublespeak, subtle put downs and deliberately avoiding the point and making the conversation about something ...
aurorajack's user avatar
2 votes
2 answers
203 views

Spoken lists in dialogue

A character is speaking to another and calling out a number of items listed in their notes. How can that dialogue be formatted to reflect a steady stream of speech? Not a bullet list or assigning a ...
Drew's user avatar
  • 21
4 votes
3 answers
2k views

Easily understandable way to describe a character speaking with vocal fry?

Trying to have a character express hesitation and uncertainty with the tone of their voice. Like the verbal equivalent of an eye roll or an awkward smile. I'd like to say they're employing vocal fry, ...
Chris's user avatar
  • 141
0 votes
2 answers
101 views

How to punctuate an interrupted question?

I have a convoluted sentence that I am struggling to get punctuated correctly. Sam is talking with Perkins. "This is costing me money," Perkins retorted. "And Triple A doesn't pay ...
NoName's user avatar
  • 1
0 votes
3 answers
114 views

Writing apartment numbers in dialog

I am editing a mystery that takes place in an apartment building. Various apartment numbers are referenced often. 503 is where the murder takes place. Everyone always says each digit when referring to ...
NoName's user avatar
  • 1
5 votes
4 answers
912 views

Can dialogue be put in the same paragraph as action text?

I'm a beginner writer, trying to learn fundementals. I'm editing some work now and I'm confused about proper formatting of paragraphs with dialogue. I know that you should start a new paragraph when ...
LPCOLLINS's user avatar
4 votes
2 answers
773 views

How to break dialog with narrative in a single sentence?

What is the most appealing way to insert a bit of narrative within dialog in a single sentence? For example: “The unified realm of my childhood,” Lucy hoped to avoid discussing the reasons for its ...
mfrancis's user avatar
1 vote
3 answers
79 views

Is it possible to create unique voices in your story if all your characters use simple words and sentences in their dialogues?

Is it possible to create unique voices in your story if all your characters use simple words and sentences in their dialogues? I believe that simple dialogues may not allow for the same level of ...
Sayaman's user avatar
  • 14.9k
1 vote
1 answer
60 views

Can I combine a character's talking and thoughts in contiguous lines of dialogue?

‘This is harder than I thought.’ Dakota mused, then said; “Shane is smart as a whip,” while watching Melody's face for her reaction. “I’m surprised he let me do this.”
RockyFaher's user avatar
0 votes
3 answers
119 views

How do I make my dialogue seem less rushed?

I'm currently writing a book in which one of the characters talks about using sleeping pills, which he overdoses on at the end. This is a really important conversation because it is the first ...
Dangamations's user avatar
1 vote
2 answers
125 views

Is it possible to mix narration styles from a novel and from a theater play in the same book?

I am in the process of writing a novel made consisting of a series of 'real time' scenes with heavy usage of dialogues and some narration. Some scenes are more heavy on dialogues than others. Is it ...
user avatar
0 votes
1 answer
62 views

Switching from one language to another using dialog tags

Is it ok to switch languages from one line to the other rapidly using dialog tags, and is there a better way to do this? Here's an example without further due: "Hey, this is not good." ...
Sayaman's user avatar
  • 14.9k
2 votes
1 answer
112 views

Multiple Character Dialogue & Action Formatting

I’m editing a first person story and I’m a bit stumped on one thing in particular. I’m not sure how to explain this in a non-confusing way. Is it okay or correct to mix the dialogue and actions of one ...
wittywrites's user avatar
1 vote
1 answer
62 views

How do you shorten a long spell incantation in a comic book?

O water, garden of the soul, spirit of the moon, hallowed source of life, I command you to converge before me, I, child of Gaia! Aqua! Let's say I have to have my character say this long incantation ...
Sayaman's user avatar
  • 14.9k
2 votes
1 answer
80 views

What speech tags can you use for people who are mute?

What speech tags can you use for people who are mute? You usually use "he said" as speech tag when you introduce a dialogue when you want to introduce a speech, but can you use the generic &...
Sayaman's user avatar
  • 14.9k
10 votes
6 answers
5k views

Is there a word that can replace the phrase "said sarcastically"?

Suppose that,during a conversation in a book, one character says something sarcastically. As the author, I want the readers to know that the character was being sarcastic, but I do not want to say ...
Mathematician's user avatar
7 votes
7 answers
6k views

Is it okay for the male and female characters in your story to sound the same?

So my philosophy is "if you can't do it, don't bother", and I couldn't write realistic female dialogues so I decided to not bother at all with gender differences and make them sound the same....
Sayaman's user avatar
  • 14.9k
4 votes
1 answer
157 views

Writing a third person limited protagonist without any inner dialogue

I want to write a protagonist that thinks as I do; that is to say, without any inner monologue. I don't even think in images either. It's just abstract thoughts for me. If a place reminds me of my ...
user57479's user avatar
0 votes
1 answer
75 views

How do you resolve and address a conflict that escalated quickly and should you even address it?

How do you resolve and address a conflict that escalated quickly and should you even address it? I wrote a scene and on re-reading it, it didn't make sense and just distracted the readers from the ...
Sayaman's user avatar
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