1. Rosemary74

    Rosemary74 New Member

    Joined:
    Jan 26, 2023
    Messages:
    2
    Likes Received:
    0

    Can I use 'er" or 'erm' in a dialogue?

    Discussion in 'Dialogue Development' started by Rosemary74, Jan 26, 2023.

    Hi! Good evening here (yes it's over than midnigth actually in France...) I'm new on the forum and I have to ask you something.
    I am a french author, fantasy, scyfy, etc, and I am actually in the middle of translating in english (thank you Capitain Obvious) one of my novel. I've search on the web if someone have a answer to my question, but I didn't find a real yes or no answer so, I've decided to ask here as you have already (iwhtout knowing it) help me before.

    So! Could I use the terms 'er' or 'erm' in a middle of a setence when my character is hesitating? Like this setence from this book :

    I’m sorry, could you repeat, I’ve not understood you request,” Tara said.
    “Sorry, Tara. Erm… Could you find me something really specific on your databases?”​

    The italic is for an AI, and the setence next is from a real person. This is the first time I am facing that kind of "problem" if it is one, so I need to ask around.
    Thank you for any kind of response!
     
  2. Homer Potvin

    Homer Potvin A tombstone hand and a graveyard mind Staff Supporter Contributor

    Joined:
    Jan 8, 2017
    Messages:
    10,777
    Likes Received:
    18,131
    Location:
    Rhode Island
    Sure, why not? You see "uh" and "huh" more frequently in fiction, but I suppose "er" and "erm" would be acceptable. I'd only use them sparingly, though. Those random phonetic utterances can get annoying in a hurry. So do other stylistic things is they're not styled enough.
     
  3. w. bogart

    w. bogart Member

    Joined:
    Nov 5, 2022
    Messages:
    591
    Likes Received:
    269
    Location:
    US
    People use them in conversations so there is no reason you can't. You could use hesitations of this type to give a character a distinct speaking voice.
     
    Rosemary74 and AntPoems like this.
  4. Rosemary74

    Rosemary74 New Member

    Joined:
    Jan 26, 2023
    Messages:
    2
    Likes Received:
    0
    Thank you so much. This book is nearly finished and this is the first time in more than 400 pages I use this "words" ^^ It was needed in this particular sentence, but maybe I'll find it would be usefull in another dialogues at the begining after correcting and rereading phase.
    Thank you to you all ^^
     
  5. w. bogart

    w. bogart Member

    Joined:
    Nov 5, 2022
    Messages:
    591
    Likes Received:
    269
    Location:
    US
    Glad we could help
     
    Rosemary74 likes this.

Share This Page

  1. This site uses cookies to help personalise content, tailor your experience and to keep you logged in if you register.
    By continuing to use this site, you are consenting to our use of cookies.
    Dismiss Notice