1. Ahen

    Ahen New Member

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    Smart or Straight? Text in Quotes

    Discussion in 'Query & Cover Letter Critique' started by Ahen, Jan 4, 2017.

    Should I use smart quotes (curved or angled) or straight quotes in a manuscript sent to an agent/publisher? I have seen conflicting recommendations. What is everyone else doing?

    Also, for a submission (via email), the recommendation is to paste it in the body of your email, but in Times New Roman or Courier. It looks awful, but is that how agents really want it? Perhaps, it makes cut/paste easier for them?
     
  2. BayView

    BayView Huh. Interesting. Contributor

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    A lot of agents don't want to open attachments, so they want the first pages in the body of the e-mail in order to have a quick look before taking the chance of trusting a stranger's attachment. Whatever the default font of your e-mail program is will probably work - I wouldn't get fancy.

    I honestly don't think it's a big deal whether you use straight or smart quotes for your dialogue. I guess the advantage of straight quotes is that they'll work no matter what format your work is read in, but... smart quotes look better!

    I use smart quotes for stuff I submit and have never heard a complaint.
     
  3. Ahen

    Ahen New Member

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    Thank you! I am overanalyzing all these little details lately and just want to know everyone else's experiences and what's "normal" practice. Thanks for the tips!
     
  4. Laurin Kelly

    Laurin Kelly Contributor Contributor

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    My publisher requires that submissions use straight rather than curly quotes. I have a feeling there are some who prefer the reverse, and others who don't care at all. Just make sure your MS is properly formatted per the guidelines of whoever you're submitting to (this may require saving different versions of the same MS).
     
  5. Steerpike

    Steerpike Felis amatus Contributor

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    Online publications often prefer straight quotes, because the smart quotes sometimes get screwed up when cutting and pasting for online publication. Also, when going between formats, smart quotes can be screwed up. I use straight quotes when submitting just because I know they're going to be consistent.
     
  6. Ahen

    Ahen New Member

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    Ok, so from what I've gathered, straight quotes are the safe choice. They will work in multiple formats across multiple platforms, which means less re-work on the back-end. In that case, I will switch over to straight quotes and adopt them as my method of choice.
     

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