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Quotation Marks—Single, Double, or None
—Unnecessary Quotation Marks--
If no one said the words, do not use quotation marks.
Quotation marks shouldn’t be used for emphasis, indirect quotations, or anything other than actual quotes.
Don’t use quotation marks for emphasis. For emphasis, you can use italics. (You can use underline or bold, as well; however, it is NOT recommended to use bold or underlining in fiction writing.)
“Do not” park here. (UNNECESSARY)
“Never” use quotation marks for emphasis! (UNNECESSARY)
In this following sentence, because of that, we know this is an indirect quote, so the quotation marks aren’t necessary.
They said that the “British were coming”. (INCORRECT)
The neighbor popped in to say “hi”. (INCORRECT)
(Source for unnecessary quotes: Grammarly)
—Single or Double Quotation Marks--
Quotation Marks within Quotation Marks
I highly recommend the use of single quotation marks used throughout a manuscript except for actual quotes and dialogue. It isn't wrong to use double, but it is awkward when there is a quote within a quote, and the writer uses double within double.
Example: Speaking to his mom on the phone, Roger said, "Suzy had a very stressful day at the office. When she came home, she told the children, 'You are both going to bed early tonight!'"
Of course, the above example could be written like this, too: "Suzy had a very stressful day at the office. When she came home, she told the children they were both going to bed early tonight." Then the issue of single and double quotes wouldn't be necessary. Only the use of double quotation marks for dialogue.
So, for consistency and when necessary, I recommend single quotes except for dialogue.
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TIPSY TODAY with Rogena © RMJ MS 01/07/15
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