Weird Hitchhiking Stories and How to Punctuate Dialogue

Dogs Are Smarter Than People: Writing Life, Marriage and Motivation
Dogs Are Smarter Than People: Writing Life, Marriage and Motivation
Weird Hitchhiking Stories and How to Punctuate Dialogue
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In last week’s podcast we started to talk about how to punctuate dialogue because we’re sexy like that. And we’re continuing that discussion this week.

A great source of how to to punctuate dialogue is from theeditorsblog.net

They are calm and lovely and explain things really well.

And for a reminder: A dialogue tag is just the bits like “they said,” “she whispered,” “he yelled.”

Single line of dialogue with dialogue tag and action

So, for this, you’ve got quotation marks around your dialogue with the dialogue tag following what was said. But before that, right before the end quotation mark, you have a comma. There’s no capital letter for that dialogue tag. Why? Because it’s the same damn sentence, that’s why, and you can’t just randomly capitalize things in there. A period goes at the very end of the action or beat.

“Shaunie is a cutie face,” she said, hoping Shaunie would look her way and smile.

Quotation Marks + Capitalized First Word + Comma + End Quotation Marks + Lowercase First Word in the Dialogue Tag + Comma (usually) + Action/Beat + Period.

You can switch that around and start off with the action/beat and the dialogue tag.

Hoping Shaunie would look her way and smile, she said, “Shaunie is a cutie face.”

Action/Beat + Comma + Dialogue Tag + Quotation Marks + Capitalized First Word + Period + End Quote

So, then you have the interrupting dialogue stuff that writers love.

This is when the dialogue is all the same sentence, but it’s interrupted by the dialogue tag. When that happens, you want a comma before the last quotation marks in the first part of the sentence and then again after the dialogue tag.

“Shaunie is a cutie face,” she said, hoping Shaunie would look her way and smile, “but he doesn’t ever notice me.”

Or

“Shaunie is a cutie face,” she said, “but he doesn’t ever notice me.”

Quotation Marks + Capitalized First Word + Comma + End Quotation Marks + Lowercase First Word in the Dialogue Tag + Comma + Action/Beat + Comma + Quotation Marks + Lowercased first word + End Punctuation (not a comma) + End Quotation Marks.

Two sentences interrupted

Or you can get all emphatic and make it two sentences because it’s dialogue. Then the first sentence has a period before the end quotes and dialogue tag. The dialogue tag ends with a period. The second quote section starts with a capital letter. Whew. That’s a lot. Ready?

“Shaunie is a cutie face,” she said, hoping Shaunie would look her way and smile. “But he doesn’t ever notice me.”

Quotation Marks + Capitalized First Word + Comma + End Quote Marks + Lowercase First Word in the Dialogue Tag + Comma + Action/Beat + Period + Quotation Marks + Capitalized First Word + End Punctuation (not a comma) + End Quotation Marks.

Whew, that was a lot. Our brains are fried? Your brains okay?

Writing Tip of the Pod

Be sexy. Know your punctuation.

Dog Tip for Life

Don’t just bark at people. It’s easy, but it doesn’t get you what you want.

LINKS WE REFERENCE IN THE RANDOM THOUGHTS PART OF THE PODCAST

https://omaha.com/news/national/roadrunner-going-faster-ends-up-in-maine-after-hitchhike/article_4ce788b0-ef17-50ea-b260-36325130663c.html

https://www.ranker.com/list/creepy-hitchhiker-stories/isadora-teich

SHOUT OUT!

The music we’ve clipped and shortened in this podcast is awesome and is made available through the Creative Commons License. 

Here’s a link to that and the artist’s website. Who is this artist and what is this song?  It’s “Summer Spliff” by Broke For Free.

AND we are transitioning to a new writer podcast called WRITE BETTER NOW! You’ll be able to check it out here starting in 2022!

We have a podcast, LOVING THE STRANGE, which we stream live on Carrie’s Facebook and Twitter and LinkedIn on Fridays. Her Facebook and Twitter handles are all carriejonesbooks or carriejonesbook.

Carrie is reading one of her poems every week on CARRIE DOES POEMS. And there you go! Whew! That’s a lot!

Here’s the link.

best writing podcast WRITE BETTER NOW
Write Better Now – Writing Tips podcast for authors and writers
best podcast ever
loving the strange the podcast about embracing the weird
best poetry podcast by poet
Carrie Does Poems

How to Punctuate Dialogue and Astronauts in Diapers

Dogs Are Smarter Than People: Writing Life, Marriage and Motivation
Dogs Are Smarter Than People: Writing Life, Marriage and Motivation
How to Punctuate Dialogue and Astronauts in Diapers
/

A great source of how to to punctuate dialogue is from theeditorsblog.net

They are calm and lovely and explain things really well.

But if you’re a little weird, you’re in the right place.

Let’s get started for this two-part podcast that we’ll finish next week.

And for a reminder: A dialogue tag is just the bits like “they said,” “she whispered,” “he yelled.”

Single line of dialogue, no dialogue tag.

You put the whole sentence inside those quotation marks.

“Shaunie is a cutie face.”

Quotation Marks + Capitalized First Word + Period/Question Mark/Exclamation Point+ End Quote

Single line with dialogue tag (attribution) coming after it.

This time you put the dialogue inside the quotation marks and also a COMMA of MAGIC right before the last quotation marks. Then after the dialogue tag you put a period like this:

“Shaunie is a cutie face,” she said.

Why is this?

It’s pretty simple, the whole thing is a sentence, but it’s a sentence in two parts. Part one is the stuff someone is saying aloud. Part two is telling the reader who is saying it. It’s all one big thing and that’s why you don’t have a period inside the last quotation marks before the dialogue tag.

Whoa. Mind blow, right?


And that’s the same reason we don’t capitalize SHE in the dialogue tag of SHE SAID.

Quotation Marks + Capitalized First Word + Comma + End Quote + Lowercase First Word in the Dialogue Tag + Period.

We’re going to do just one more and continue on next week.

Single line, but you’re putting the dialogue tag first

So, it’s totally the same concept. It’s all one sentence, but this time the capitalization gets a bit wonky. You want to capitalize the first spoken word inside the first quotation marks and put a COMMA OF MAGIC right before it to separate the spoken words from the tag. Ready?

She said, “Shaunie, you are such a cutie-cutie face, my little coco-puff.”

So, you have a capitalized SHE at the beginning of the sentence, a comma at the end of the tag, quotation marks, then a capitalized first word.

Tag + Comma + Quotation marks + Ending punctuation (period, exclamation point, question mark) + End Quotation marks.

WRITING TIP OF THE POD


Know your dialogue punctuation because it gets super confusing if you don’t.

DOG TIP FOR LIFE

When you know the rules, when you know how to communicate your wants, you should be able to get your people to understand you AND you can understand your people.


SHOUT OUT!

The music we’ve clipped and shortened in this podcast is awesome and is made available through the Creative Commons License. 

Here’s a link to that and the artist’s website. Who is this artist and what is this song?  It’s “Summer Spliff” by Broke For Free.

AND we are transitioning to a new writer podcast called WRITE BETTER NOW! You’ll be able to check it out here starting in 2022!

We have a podcast, LOVING THE STRANGE, which we stream live on Carrie’s Facebook and Twitter and LinkedIn on Fridays. Her Facebook and Twitter handles are all carriejonesbooks or carriejonesbook.

Carrie is reading one of her poems every week on CARRIE DOES POEMS. And there you go! Whew! That’s a lot!

Here’s the link.

best writing podcast WRITE BETTER NOW
Write Better Now – Writing Tips podcast for authors and writers
best podcast ever
loving the strange the podcast about embracing the weird
best poetry podcast by poet
Carrie Does Poems

Links We Mention In Random Thoughts

https://time.com/6115335/spacex-astronauts-200-days/

https://www.npr.org/2021/11/20/1057698279/cash-spill-san-diego–california-freeway

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