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  1. #11
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Sep 2010

    By chapter break, I just mean a new chapter. If your flashbacks are long enough, you could separate them as chapters.

    Whether to do lengthy flashbacks, how many, where to put them...I think these are all dependent on your story, your style, your sort of readers, how you want the story to unfold. Good luck.

  2. #12
    Senior Member Avonne Writer's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2011
    Southern California, USA
    Shaun, though there are no set rules other than clarity, I can tell you what irks me as a reader. If you are going to use dialogue inside the graph, use it at the beginning or just inside of the beginning, and at the end. But, never put it in the front, middle, and end. In that case, it is better to break it up. Also, if it ever becomes confusing break it up, unless you tag it so the reader knows who is speaking.

    As for italics. I dislike when authors DON'T use italics with internal dialogue (unless, like Jena said, you tag it). Because as readers go, when you're skipping along rather quickly, and someone throws in some internal dialogue, you (or I do, anyway) hit the mental breaks. Your eyes skip right over the quotation marks, because your brain picks up on when someone is speaking. So, when the internal dialogue starts your brain thinks, quotes, someone is talking. Then, you figure out it was internal, and you hit the mental breaks. I hope you get what I'm saying.

    Shaun and Zoe - If you leave your flashback out of the story and it still makes perfect sense, then you don't need it. Especially if it's lengthy. I almost always skip them as a reader. I HATE FLASHBACKS! I want to learn from the mc's experiences that are happening right now. I want to be inside his/her head. I don't want a flashback to tell me why they are behaving, or whatever a certain way. I haven't found too many flashback scenes in books that I absolutely love.

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