Friday, September 16, 2016

My Journey to a Book Contract - Part 7 Internal Dialogue Editor's Notes

by Elva Cobb Martin

Today I am sharing some internal dialogue notes from the Prism editor of  my romantic suspense novel, Summer of Deception, which is to be released in March, 2017.

What do you think the characters in the pictures below might be thinking?

Secret: My hero for my next novel. Ethan Wentworth. He's begging me to tell his story.

Internal Dialogue and Italics – Notes from Susan Baganz, Editor, Prism Book Group

   Internal dialog is the way someone talks to themselves in their minds, it’s not just mere thoughts)

1) Just plain thoughts are not italicized.  
     Was this a manipulation?  
     Good gravy. Was this the way the Marines landed?  
2)When the character is actually talking to himself, that should be italicized. 
      It was just a nightmare. It was just a nightmare.
      Get out of my way, please.
      Not expecting her?
      A pleasing fragrance emanated from her. Musk or lavender?

3) Silent prayers are italicized.
     God help me.
     Lord, thank You for this wonderful summer position, but I’m going to need Your help big time to sit at table with this man every day.

4)  Third person past tense versus first person present tense in thoughts. (This was an eye opener for me)
     Incorrect: Wipe the silly smirk off your face. (Simple thought of character I had in italics)
    Corrected: She longed to wipe the silly smirk off his face.
     Incorrect: Yes, what is preventing me?
     Corrected: Yes, what was preventing her?

      Incorrect: So you don't care a thing about Morgan, Mr. Barrett? And you think marijuana shouldn't be legalized, but you've stashed a fortune in cocaine in your attic.

     Corrected:  So he didn't care a thing about Morgan. And he thought marijuana shouldn't be legalized but he stashed a fortune of cocaine in his attic. 

Please share any tips you have about internal dialog, and do share this blog on your social media if it proved helpful.

Elva Cobb Martin