Sunday, 23 January 2011

Q is for Quotation Marks

I have recently learned, much to my surprise, that quotation marks / speech marks can be confusing, because whatever I was taught at school appears to be out-of-date and incorrect. I had been happily using double speech marks for my dialogue which I have been advised is currently incorrect for the UK publishing industry!

I can tell you that came as quite a shock to me but my saving grace was this: at least I had been consistent in my usage and had I been aiming for the US market or the rest of the global publishing industry I would have been correct.

Now I take more care and change the quotation marks to reflect current UK trend and publishing requirement. Why? That’s simple: because I don’t want to stand out as a novice or someone who is not prepared to be flexible and adopt change.

So all my dialogue is now in single speech marks. However, finding out that double speech marks can be used inside dialogue blew my mind! I shall avoid even attempting this in my writing as I may confuse myself further.

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