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Elise_of_the_Isle
04-21-2006, 10:18 PM
After a quotation, should 'said' come before or after the name. Also is there a rule when one should be used as opposed to the other. Sometimes I would attach a phrase "...while they are doing such and such". Which do publishers prefer? I can imagine it would be very distracting to switch between them when having a conversation. Obviously, if a pronoun were to be used it would be "I said, she said, he said"

Dark Sim
04-21-2006, 10:43 PM
Well I have seen both said Allison and Allison said, with the latter being more common. I think, but I could be wrong, the former is found more commonly in older novels but not as commonly in modern ones. I think you could probably use both, but use whichever one best suits the sentence at the time for the rhythm you want to convey.

maestrowork
04-21-2006, 10:45 PM
FWIW, I think "said she" is more formal. "She said" is more contemporary. But it doesn't matter. Just be consistent.

Jamesaritchie
04-21-2006, 11:04 PM
It's really a matter of style, and "said Allison" has largely gone out of style. But it does no harm to use it in instances such as you ask about. I never do. I like to keep things consistent, and it does seem outdated, outside of some children's books where it's still commonly used.

reph
04-21-2006, 11:50 PM
You might want to put "said" first for special situations.

"Boo!" said Allison, who liked to scare people.

"Get that fire extinguisher out of here or I'll summon the guards," said Allison, the royal court's Keeper of the Flame.

Jamesaritchie
04-22-2006, 05:50 PM
You might want to put "said" first for special situations.

"Boo!" said Allison, who liked to scare people.

"Get that fire extinguisher out of here or I'll summon the guards," said Allison, the royal court's Keeper of the Flame.


Excellent point. Yes, in such situations, "said" should definitely come first.

veronie
04-23-2006, 12:20 AM
Reph is right. That is the way we do it in newspapers. It's always "Allison said" or "she said," unless there is some attribution that comes along with the name.

Puddle Jumper
04-23-2006, 08:01 AM
FWIW, I think "said she" is more formal. "She said" is more contemporary. But it doesn't matter. Just be consistent.
How important is consistancy? I tend to use them both in a story.

reph
04-23-2006, 09:43 AM
How important is consistancy? I tend to use them both in a story.
My opinion: consistency isn't so important that a "said she" here and there, among a crowd of "she saids," will ruin a story. The main thing is, "she said" sounds more natural to modern audiences.

Puddle Jumper
04-23-2006, 09:57 AM
My opinion: consistency isn't so important that a "said she" here and there, among a crowd of "she saids," will ruin a story. The main thing is, "she said" sounds more natural to modern audiences.
I think I have a problem in consistency between sounding modern and sounding old-fashioned. I seem to alternate frequently between the two when I write. I have this habit if someone in the scene is young, I write more modern. If someone in the scene is mature, I write more old-fashion. How can I keep myself consistent?

reph
04-23-2006, 10:42 AM
How can I keep myself consistent?By not mixing up your narrator with your other characters. The narrator isn't you, exactly. It's an imaginary person with a writing style that may not be your normal, relaxed style.

Older and younger characters will probably speak differently, but that affects only the dialogue, not the narration.

Jamesaritchie
04-23-2006, 05:32 PM
How important is consistancy? I tend to use them both in a story.

I think consistency comes from using each in the right way, at the right time. Unless there's a reason to use "said she," as in the examples reph showed, I wouldn't do it. If 'she said" does the job properly, this is what should be used.

maestrowork
04-23-2006, 05:40 PM
By not mixing up your narrator with your other characters. The narrator isn't you, exactly. It's an imaginary person with a writing style that may not be your normal, relaxed style.

Older and younger characters will probably speak differently, but that affects only the dialogue, not the narration.

Exactly.

You will look like an amateur if you write this:

"It's a hot day," said Mrs. Henderson.
"Duh, of course it is. I'm sweating," Allison said.
"Well, dear," said Mrs. Henderson, "you don't have to use that tone on me."
"Whatever."
"I have to speak with your poor mother."
"As if."
"That's it, young lady," said Mrs. Henderson.
"I'm really scared now," Allison said.