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  1. #1
    Jean Bonifacio
    Guest

    Thoughts on paper

    I'm having a hard time putting my main characters thoughts on paper. She says what she's really thinking in her mind. Kind of like talking to herself.
    How could I get that across in a manuscript that's acceptable? Italics? Underline?



  2. #2
    Aaron Brown
    Guest

    Re: Thoughts on paper

    Italics work fine for thoughts.

  3. #3
    Jean Bonifacio
    Guest

    Re: Thoughts on paper

    Thanks

  4. #4
    Ray Veen
    Guest

    Re: Thoughts on paper

    Interior monologue's a slippery thing. Italics are good, but only for one line thoughts that are kind of injected into a narrative. For longer blocks of thought, you just want to ease into it, spelling out the thoughts just as you would think them in your head. The reader's smart enough to catch on to what you're doing. One more thing: delete almost every instance of "he thought" and "he wondered".

    Remington looked at the latest threads on Writer's Net. Whoa, what have we here. This guy stole my story idea. At least I think it's my story. He has a female MC, but she goes to a secret school for wizards just like in my story. Man I hate when people steal my story ideas. My ideas are the bomb. I could be the richest writer ever, if only people would stop stealing my story ideas.

    He pounded his fist on the computer desk. All right. Time to give this punk a textual beating.

  5. #5
    Jean Bonifacio
    Guest

    Re: Thoughts on paper

    Okay Ray Veen, you've raised an excellent point. They are mostly thoughts but sometimes narrative thoughts. Would the idea of italics still work or am I just confusing the matter? Here is an example of something I did.


    Even before I said it, I knew it was the wrong thing to say but my curse will never be broken. At first Sam looks offended but then she looks to the side at the foyer mirror and starts hysterically laughing. Sam’s laugh was always infectious so I immediately start laughing too. As we continue to laugh, I remember the many sleep overs at Sam’s house where I would always have to bring three pairs of panties because sometime during the night I would always end up hunched over peeing myself pleading with her to stop laughing. I knew Sam always noticed me running to the bathroom with a new pair of panties but she never said anything and never made me feel dumb.

    That was my friend, sensitive to what needed sensitivity.

    “You better calm down before you pee yourself Karen!”

    Bitch!

  6. #6
    Ray Veen
    Guest

    Re: Thoughts on paper

    Interior monologue-wise, this is pretty well-written. You can use italics as a means of offsetting a point, like you did, but in this case, I think giving it its own paragraph was more effective. The deal with italics and interior monologue is more like when you're describing a series of actions and want to interject one quick thought. Maybe my example confused you, if so, I apologize - it was sloppy.

    Interior monologue is clearly not your problem. You should work on your tenses, though. You're flipping back and forth between past and present.

  7. #7
    Ce Ce
    Guest

    Re: Thoughts on paper

    I have to disagree with this advice. In your example, what you're doing is switching tenses -- present for thoughts and past for actions, and switching from first to third person. IMO, any direct, first-person, present-tense thought should be italicized or set apart by the he-thought/she-thought tags.

    Otherwise you really risk confusing readers. And some of them are, believe me, easily confused.

    >>One more thing: delete almost every instance of "he thought" and "he wondered".

    Remington looked at the latest threads on Writer's Net. Whoa, what have we here. This guy stole my story idea. At least I think it's my story. He has a female MC, but she goes to a secret school for wizards just like in my story. Man I hate when people steal my story ideas. My ideas are the bomb. I could be the richest writer ever, if only people would stop stealing my story ideas.

    He pounded his fist on the computer desk. All right. Time to give this punk a textual beating.<<

    So I'd have it more like:

    Remington looked at the latest threads on Writer's Net. Whoa, what have we here? Someone had stolen his story idea. At least, he thought it was his story. The "author" had a female MC, but she went to a secret school for wizards just like in his own story. Man, I hate when people steal my story ideas. His ideas were the bomb. He could be the richest writer ever, if only people would stop stealing his story ideas.

    He pounded his fist on the computer desk. All right. Time to give this punk a textual beating.

    Something like that.

    Just my opinion.

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