Simple Guide to Format

Simple Guide to Format

A Lesson by numbers17

How you can format your dialogue.


After a long absence I am back.


I was thinking about writing or continuing my story, but I felt as though I wanted to help with a very simple course that would help people with their format on dialogue. There are various different and more advanced methods on how to flesh out your dialogue, but I want to keep things a little simple right now.


Let's kick this.


First thing we should hit is the quotes.


If my character is speaking you always want to use quotes to let the reader know that the character is speaking.


Good example:


"Pop's, you got any Pabst left in the fridge?" Tommy asked.


That is a very simple quotation and form of dialogue. You always want to let the reader know who is speaking.


Now, there is also the form of punctuation. There are various ways you can do this, but I found that using a comma to seperate from the speaker and the quotation especially if there is a directive statement.


"Get in the car Adam," Tommy said.


In adition you can also add on an action to what the character is speaking.


"Get in the car Adam," Tommy said pounding on the steering wheel in excitement.


This gives a very good flow to the story rather than blocking the action and the dialogue. Something you should avoid is this:


"Get in the car Adam," Tommy said. He was pounding on the steering wheel in excitement as he said this.


Now, this has beeen used before and there is actually nothing wrong with it, but it kind of depends on the format of your story. I personally feel as though you using the former makes the story flow a little better.


Finally, here is what you should do if you want two characters to talk to each other.




"Get in the car Adam," Tommy said.


"Where are we going?" Adam asked.


"It doesn't matter just get in the car."

"Okay, Tommy, just take it easy."


Did you see what I did? You no longer needed to let the reader know that the two characters are speaking because it has already been established.


Okay, so this is a simple introduction. Any questions, feel free to ask me.

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Added on February 4, 2013
Last Updated on February 4, 2013

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