Dialogue Lesson

Everything you need to know about dialogue!! (kinda)

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What is dialogue???

Dialogue is the conversation between two or more people that is featured in books, plays, and movies.


Example:

"Stop listening to Skinny Love," said Jordan, "I mean it."

The Basics

Dialogue must always include quotation marks (" ") or (' '). This is the main indicator that what you are reading is indeed dialogue. At the end of a dialogue the period goes before the ending quotation.

USE DIALOGUE TO ENHANCE ANY STORY

Dialogue Tags

Dialogue usually use tags which can be "he said," "they whispered," etc. Dialogue tags indicate who is talking and what method they are using.


When writing a with story back and forth dialogue a new paragraph will eventually indicate who is speaking and will allow you to stop using dialogue tags. Having too many tags would get redundant and boring.

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SENTENCES THAT START WITH DIALOGUE TAGS

Jesus said, "Let there be light."


  • Comma before the opening quotation mark.
  • Capital letter to indicate the beginning of a sentence inside the opening quotation mark.
  • A period to end the quoted sentence.
  • Closing quotation mark.

SENTENCES THAT HAVE DIALOGUE TAGS AT THE END

"Let there be light," said Jesus.


  • Capital letter to indicate the beginning of a sentence inside the opening quotation mark.
  • A comma to end the quoted sentence before the closing quotation mark that precedes the dialogue tag.
  • Dialogue tag at the end with a period to end the sentence.

DIALOGUE TAG PLACED IN THE MIDDLE OF A SENTENCE

"Let the be," Jesus said, "light."


  • Capital letter to indicate the beginning of a sentence inside the opening quotation mark.
  • A comma to end the quoted sentence before the closing quotation mark that precedes the dialogue tag.
  • Comma before the second opening quotation mark.
  • Lower case letter to indicate the second piece of the quotation is still a part of the sentence that began in the first piece of the quotation.
  • A period to end the quoted sentence.
  • Closing quotation mark.

SOME PEOPLE KNOWN FOR USING DIALOGUE