1. BonanzaGirl1
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    BonanzaGirl1 Member

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    He Said.

    Discussion in 'General Writing' started by BonanzaGirl1, May 30, 2012.

    I'm just wondering, if there are two people in the dialogue, does every sentence always has to end with either, he said or such as Ben said, or Joe or whoever they are talking with? Or can it be just dialogue between the two without naming.
     
  2. Skodt
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    Skodt Member

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    As long as you make it clear and legable then there is no reason for he said, she said, Ben said. Yet make sure the voices and words are different. Don't mesh your characters, or things will get utterly confusing.
     
  3. BonanzaGirl1
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    BonanzaGirl1 Member

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    Thanks Skodt. I have made it clear who are talking at the beginning. Thanks for the info.
     
  4. ChickenFreak
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    ChickenFreak Contributing Member Contributor

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    You definitely don't need to tag every line. You probably want to identify a line once in a while, because with too long an untagged sequence, people will lose count. But you can identify the line with an action instead of a tag. Random example:

    Joe stared at his soup. Rancid onions. Stale croutons. And what _is_ that thing down there? Is it actually moving or is that just a shadow? He picked up a spoon and poked at it.
    "Good, huh?"
    Joe jerked his head up and blinked at the waitress. "Uh..."
    "My mama's recipe. Every time we got sick, she'd make us a big pot of it. By the time it was gone, we were better."
    "I guess it must have chicken broth, then."
    Her brow furrowed. "Why?"
    "Well, you know what they say about chicken soup."
    She said, "No?"
    "Um... never mind. Hey, I'm later than I thought; can you get me a to-go cup? I wouldn't want to miss a drop."


    ChickenFreak
     
  5. BonanzaGirl1
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    BonanzaGirl1 Member

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    Haha Thanks ChickenFreak, love it!!
     
  6. Reptile Hazard
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    Reptile Hazard Member

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    You should read this blog by Cogito, I've found it very useful regarding this issue: http://www.writingforums.org/blog.php?b=294
     
  7. Dante Dases
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    Dante Dases Contributing Member Contributor

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    Cog's blogs are excellent resources. I don't think he gets enough credit for the content on them.
     
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  8. Reptile Hazard
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    Reptile Hazard Member

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    I've found myself bookmarking most of his entries, because they are well written and deliver the point effectively.
     
  9. PeterC
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    PeterC Active Member

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    In fact tagging every line of dialog can set up a very distracting rhythm of "he said... she said." The writing is stronger if you don't tag every line. Of course you need to be sure it's clear who is speaking by using context or action to disambiguate each utterance. When there are more than two people involved in the dialog it gets harder.
     
  10. AmyHolt
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    AmyHolt Contributing Member

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    I personally like 'beats'. Pairing a characters action with the characters words. But my rule of thumb is that you can go about five lines without a dialogue tag (or beat) before your reader starts losing track of who's talking.
     

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