Archive for November, 2014

Hey, y’all! Blog post for the first time since I wrote either a In the Works or an interview. I still plan on posting a few more interviews every now and then but nothing like the theme that we just went through.

My newest projects, school, basketball, ballet and social life have kept me extremely busy-too busy to even come up with something entirely decent for this blog and all of you amazing followers.

I’ve been improving drastically ( I think and hope :P) my writing with a new school curriculum One Year Adventure Novel and have been learning all sorts of necessary plotline and goals and such that I’ve needed to map out for my books for years. I know this sucks to hear but for some of you writers who are actually pleased with your writing, you probably still have a great deal more to learn. There is never anything that you can possibly know everything to, and writing is a difficult path to take. There are just so many ways that one can improve and become a better author that it can get discouraging sometimes that you (and I) are still in the beginning stages of writing.

But don’t give up!

What I wanted to talk about today was something that I know I struggle with.

During my school curriculum, it speaks about not using anything other than “he/she said” because it can distract the reader’s attention if you continue to embellish absolutely every sentence with different verbs for describing how one said something.

While I admit that it is distracting and absolutely unnecessary to flower the words “he/she said” into “he/she annunciated” or something more elaborate, I do think that one needs to break the repetition of always using the exact same phrase after each sentence spoken.

“He/she replied,” “he/she asked,” “he/she remarked,” “he/she yelled,” can add a layer of explanation and bring life to how the character said it if the sentence itself is lacking the meaning that you wish to portray. This can be fixed with a simple verb change and/or rewriting the dialogue to further express their meaning.

That being said, I was reading an English writing book about the basic rules of correct English, and I came across a passage.

“11. Do not explain too much.

It is seldom advisable to tell all. Be sparing, for instance, in the use of adverbs after “he said,” “she replied,” and the like: “he said consolingly”; “she replied grumblingly.”  Let the conversation itself disclose the speaker’s manner or condition. Dialogue heavily weighted with adverbs after the attributive verb is cluttery and annoying. Inexperienced writers not only overwork their adverbs but load their attributives with explanatory verbs: “he consoled,” “she congratulated.” They do this, apparently, in the belief that the word said is always in need of support, or because they have been told to do it by experts in the art of bad writing.”

(The Elements of Style: Fourth Edition. Strunk, Willaim. White, E.B. 2000, 1979, Allyn & Bacon, A Pearson Education Company. 75 pg.)

All of these opinions stated, it may even be better to leave off the entire “he/she said” every sentence if the dialogue is understood as to who is speaking. For example, in my newest project, the two bantering back and forth are my main character and her best friend. It is obvious how each indented paragraph enclosed within their own set of parentheses and the words and thought patterns shown who is speaking to whom. Thus, I left off the obvious who is speaking and continued the dialogue uninterrupted by these minor details.

“You’ve got the worst timing in the world.” I replied, still not able to keep an amused smile from creeping over my face.

“If a boy liking you just makes you happy instead of going after him too, Dani, you’ve got an issue that needs more action than a-“

Here I cut her off of one of her bizarre comparisons that never made much sense except to her.

“Jasmine Goulding, if you so much as breathe a word of this to anyone outside of this little circle of trust we have going on here-“

I held up a finger.

Jaz gave me a wicked smile.

“Oh, well if you don’t want me to say anything after this, then I won’t but I cannot promise that I haven’t already said something of the sort to another.”

“Who? Hollis?”

I rolled my eyes. I swear that the walk to my locker was becoming longer by the minute of Jaz’s torture.

“Well, duh, I tell him almost everything. I’m not talking about him though.”

“Then who?” I groaned, unable to keep my curiosity at bay.

“Well, I might have spoken a little to that new kid who may or may not have broken up with said girlfriend of another high school last week and is totally available.”

I glared at her for a full minute.

None of which seemed to kill her ridiculous grin that she got whenever she got something that she wanted.

“You didn’t.”

If Josiah had wandered out aimlessly of whatever stupid class he was taking, I would have fully smacked him in the face despite my anger being more directed toward Jaz.

“I did.”

“So about this mall trip-“

I had just unlocked my locker and was gearing up to haul around my next heavy load of textbooks when she spoke.

I whirled around and dropped my book bag. The contents were scattered from one side of the hallway to the other.

“No, you didn’t!”

Jaz beamed at me.

I was going to murder her.”

xoxo,

Ella

p.S. If you agree or don’t agree, please tell me why down below in the comments!

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