1. Mckk

    Mckk Moderator Staff Supporter Contributor

    Joined:
    Dec 30, 2010
    Messages:
    5,146
    Likes Received:
    2,878

    remark - am I using it right?

    Discussion in 'Word Mechanics' started by Mckk, Oct 29, 2012.

    "I was meant to protect her."
    "You protected others."
    "But not her," he remarked.

    The dialogue is from my MS. (dialogue tags have been omitted except for the one in question since I think it led to some confusion that I was inserting tags to all dialogue lines!)

    I found myself using way too many adverbs and thought to use "remark" instead of "said bitterly" - but is this correct usage of "remark"?

    Or perhaps would "retort" be more accurate?

    Help!

    Note: I did use a dictionary, but unfortunately it does not tell me the tone with which one might make a remark, though I do gouge that it is usually used when someone makes a negative or snide comment.
     
  2. evelon

    evelon Active Member

    Joined:
    Aug 26, 2009
    Messages:
    611
    Likes Received:
    24
    Location:
    England
    Remark suggests a more casual answer. Do you actually need to use anything there if it's obvious who's speaking. Not all lines of dialogue have to be speech tagged providing it's clear whose speaking. But, if you feel you need to put something, I don't think 'remarked' is strong enough.
     
  3. Mckk

    Mckk Moderator Staff Supporter Contributor

    Joined:
    Dec 30, 2010
    Messages:
    5,146
    Likes Received:
    2,878
    The only reason why the example has dialogue tags is for the purposes of forum folks understanding it - that's not how it is in my actual MS lol! It would be tedious to say "he said, she said" after every piece. It's actually only the very last line of "But not her" that has a dialogue tag at all - but if that's gonna affect comments then I shall go up and edit it!

    And thanks good to know that "remark" comes across as casual.
     
  4. Mckk

    Mckk Moderator Staff Supporter Contributor

    Joined:
    Dec 30, 2010
    Messages:
    5,146
    Likes Received:
    2,878
    Unless the consensus is I shouldn't have a dialogue tag at all for that last line of dialogue?
     
  5. evelon

    evelon Active Member

    Joined:
    Aug 26, 2009
    Messages:
    611
    Likes Received:
    24
    Location:
    England
    Sorry, I'd missed that the other lines didn't have tags. I also think that 'remarked' doesn't really give any indication as to what the speaker is feeling. Even something liked 'he said quietly' would give some idea of emotion.
     
  6. mammamaia

    mammamaia nit-picker-in-chief Contributor

    Joined:
    Nov 21, 2006
    Messages:
    19,235
    Likes Received:
    1,015
    Location:
    Coquille, Oregon
    if it's clear who's speaking, from what came before and comes after that exchange, no tag is needed...

    but 'remark' does not in any way = 'snide' or a negative/derogative meaning of any sort... i'd strongly advise you show us how he meant it, rather than tell us...
     

Share This Page