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TIPSY TODAY with Rogena
MORE on Punctuation in Dialogue
Punctuating dialogue can be difficult for many.
When should you use a comma versus a period? And when do you capitalize dialogue tags?
Well, remember the 'new' word I tossed out last week, MNEMONIC?
Definition of MNEMONIC — mne•mon•ic adjective \ni-'mä-nik\ 1: assisting or intended to assist memory; also: of or relating to mnemonics; 2: of or relating to memory [mne•mon•i•cal•ly adverb]
I love when I'm just chatting with another person in the writing community (EJ Runyon with Bridge to Story**) and learn something new. This 'something new' is a mnemonic that will help MANY learn how to punctuate dialogue!! And that is exciting to me!
Are you ready for it? Well, here it is:
C is for Conversation—therefore, COMMA
P is for Physical Movement—therefore, PERIOD
If you say: "I'm going to the store after work," she said.
Then that is 'conversation' and a COMMA.
But, if you say: "I read this book and it really touched me." She smiled.
THAT is 'physical movement' (smiled) and needs a PERIOD.
Notice, with conversation... 'she' is lowercase. And with physical movement, 'she' is uppercase.
Think on this a bit.... print this out.... save it....
CONVERSATION consists of saying, asking, exclaiming, yelling, etc.
PHSYCAL MOVEMENT consists of sighing, nodding, shrugging, winking, laughing, coughing, etc.
See? Easy, right?
C = CONVERSATION = COMMA
P = PHYSICAL MOVEMENT = PERIOD
**SOURCE of this Mnemonic comes to you by E.J. Runyon , Writing Coach at Bridge to Story and Author of 'Tell Me (How to Write) a Story' and the novel, 'A House of Light & Stone.' www.bridgetostory.com
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