1. captken
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    captken Member

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    Another punctuation problem.

    Discussion in 'Word Mechanics' started by captken, Mar 15, 2013.

    I finally figured a logical way to an end for a tale I have been working on for over a year. (I seem to always have a half dozen projects going at once.)
    My mind is going a dozen different directions at once right now and I am drawing a blank on how to punctuate one sentence.

    How do I punctuate the following sentence? "May I help you,” he asked? I could reword the question but it seems to sound better this way.
     
  2. JJ_Maxx
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    JJ_Maxx Banned

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    When adding dialogue tags, periods become commas, exclamation points and question marks stay the same.

    "May I help you?" he asked.

    ~ J. J.
     
  3. Nee
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    Nee Contributing Member

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    "May I help you?” he asked.
     
  4. Nee
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    Nee Contributing Member

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    .....**Sorry, double post.
     
  5. Ian J.
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    Ian J. Active Member

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    Remember to keep your exclamation and question marks in the dialogue itself when they apply to the character doing the speaking.

    JJ_Maxx has it right:

    "May I help you?" he asked.

    as against:

    "May I help you," he asked?

    Which actually doesn't make any logical sense. The question and exclamation marks always override any comma or full stop at the end of dialogue in such a situation.
     
  6. captken
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    captken Member

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    Thanks again. I looked back a few pages in the tale and found a similar situation that was punctuated correctly. Sometimes I draw a blank.
     
  7. mammamaia
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    mammamaia nit-picker-in-chief Contributor

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    they're right... ? not ,
     

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