I recently mentioned in a post on how to use Quotation styles. Basically, pick one and stick with it. “Double” or ‘Single’. Recently I’ve been looking at some basic rules, the roots of writing. (Yes, there are those out there that will disagree. That’s your right to.) These rules are not fly-by-night however. They are tried and true. They are found in most properly edited works.
The one rule break I’m most irked by is not keeping punctuation in it’s proper place regarding dialogue. To me this is important. Once I’ve decided which quotation style to use. (Always double for me) then it’s important to keep the dialogue punctuation with in the quotations.
Incorrect: “Hey Amber”, Dale smiled. “How’s it going”?
Correct: “Hey Amber,” Dale smiled. “How’s it going?”
“This is the worst day ever”! Scott shouted.
“It could be worse”. Dale rolled his eyes.
“Losing your car keys and spilling your coffee is minor”. Dale chuckled. “Amber puked on me, slipped in it and cried for an hour this morning”.
“This is the worst day ever!” Scott shouted.
“It could be worse.” Dale rolled his eyes.
“Losing your car keys and spilling your coffee is minor.” Dale chuckled and slapped his knee. “Amber puked on me, slipped in it and cried for an hour this morning.”
I don’t enjoy reading dialogue punctuation outside the quotations. Sure, this happens to me by mistake when I get in a groove and grammar and punctuation take a side line as I hammer away at my keyboard. However, it’s corrected the moment I start editing and revising. (Ideally).
*Amendment to this post. Other countries such as Great Britain use outside punctuation for dialogue. It’s not what I’m familiar with since I’m in North America. Books published from British authors are sometimes converted to the North American standard when published internationally. This blog and all that I write about are based off North American standards.
My advice about Dialogue punctuation.
“Keep it inside the quotation marks.” (Unless your from Great Britain or other countries that keep it on the outside)
Other dialogue related posts
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