1. NovemberRose
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    NovemberRose Member

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    Interior monologue

    Discussion in 'Word Mechanics' started by NovemberRose, Nov 10, 2013.

    Even now, I get confused as to where interior monologue goes in relation to characters' speech. I'm writing something first person, present tense.

    So...is this correct?


    'Blake Andrews,' Aunt Stephanie says. 'Do you remember him?'

    Blake Andrews. I recognise the name from Mom's yearbook.

    The look that comes over Mom's face confirms this is a subject she would rather forget.


    OR should I put the Blake Andrews thought of my MC next to Aunt Stephanie's speech?


    and another example:

    'Maybe you could come live with me after you graduate.'

    Live with her? 'Thanks,' I say. 'I'll definitely consider it.'


    Am I correct in saying that my MC's thoughts should always be in a new paragraph?
     
  2. jazzabel
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    jazzabel Contributing Member Contributor

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    Both examples you gave are correct. I had no problem following it and it reads quite good, actually. The only thing that jarred me is you repeated 'Mom's' twice. Two repetitions don't work well, uneven number (1 or 3) always reads better.
     
  3. mammamaia
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    mammamaia nit-picker-in-chief Contributor

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    sorry, jazz, but i have to disagree... how is it correct to have only the name in italics?...

    besides, since this is being told in first person present, then everything in the narrative is the pov character's inner dialog, or 'thoughts'... isn't it?... how can only 2 words be her thought and nothing else?

    and i can't see how 3 repetitions of 'mom' could be more acceptable than those 2...

    nr...
    every time there's a character switch, you need to start a new paragraph...

    whether or not there's a switch between narrative, thought, or action in a paragraph, if it's all about/by the same character, then it's not necessary to start a new one...
     
  4. jazzabel
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    jazzabel Contributing Member Contributor

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    @mammamaia: I wasn't thinking of italics, since they seem to be a bit of a preference thing, I certainly wouldn't use them but I see them used everywhere in trad published literature, different ways including inconsistently and for emphasis (which I think is the rationale behind these). So italics here aren't wrong, per se. I was just referring to the way internal monologue was written. It makes sense, I had no issues understanding what the OP was trying to say, hence it must technically correct :)

    I read a while ago in one of the style books (Elements of Style I think it was) that uneven number of repetitions reads better, and after paying attention to it, I have to agree. Two repetitions can work, but for emphasis, because it is more jarring.

    I haven't noticed any paragraphing issues, but you are the expert so if you think there are issues, then I believe you :)
     
  5. NovemberRose
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    NovemberRose Member

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    Yes, Jazzabel, the italics were meant to be for emphasis. Thank you both for your contributions. It's a lot clearer to me now.

    Will take out the second 'Mom' and replace it with her.
     
  6. mammamaia
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    mammamaia nit-picker-in-chief Contributor

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    ok... sorry i didn't get that from your first comments...

    on the paragraphing issue:
    those 2 lines are both parts of the pov character's narrative, so should be together in the same paragraph, not separated, as i alluded to in my final comment above...
     
  7. Aurin
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    Aurin Member

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    I disagree. I think the two lines should be separate to give more impact to the second line, which I feel that the OP is going for. If you want to be by-the-book for paragraphing then yeah you can do it that way but to actually make it interesting to read, I think it's better to be set out as two lines.

    @NovemberRose it reads fine to me as is and I think the small amount of italics has a lot of positive impact on the reader. Just don't use too much otherwise it would be overkill.
     

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