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Dialogue Tags

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  • Alyse
    This is probably the most common area for mistakes we see in stories submitted to the site, and after explaining to another author today exactly what dialogue
    Message 1 of 1 , May 3 1:25 PM
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      This is probably the most common area for mistakes we see in stories
      submitted to the site, and after explaining to another author today
      exactly what dialogue tags are and why they are part of the same
      sentence as the dialogue, I exercised my google-fu! and found these
      links, which might be of some use to people:

      A very simple demonstration of dialogue tags in action:

      http://www.lorraineheath.com/articles/btb_punctdialogue.htm

      A more detailed and technical explanation of dialogue tags, but
      (brilliant for a geek like me) the examples are Star Wars based. Got
      to love a site that combines grammatical geekdom with sci-fi geekdom:

      http://rynne.decemberproject.net/essays/dialogue_tutorial_sw.html

      Dialogue tags, for those who are going 'huh?' ::g:: are those little
      bits stuck before or after dialogue to explain who is talking and how
      they're saying it. They can be easily spotted because they're usually
      a variation of 'he said'. The key thing to remember about dialogue
      tags is that, because they're part of the same sentence as the speech,
      they are offset from the dialogue with commas, not full stop. In
      other words, this is correct:

      "This is a dialogue tag," he said. "Note the comma and lowercase 'he'."

      This is not:

      "This is a dialogue tag." He said. "Note the comma and lowercase 'he'."

      And, while I'm not a huge fan of online resources for grammar, here is
      a site I do visit frequently, if only because it reminds me of the
      correct names for all those pesky tenses!

      The Armchair Grammarian: http://community-2.webtv.net/solis-boo/Grammar1/
      --
      love and Thorntons' chocolates

      Al

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