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What Are Dialogue Tags?


Dialogue tags are phrases placed before, in the middle of, or after dialogue. The purpose of dialogue tags is to attribute spoken words to a character.

Some examples:

“Come a little closer,” she said.

The little boy asked, “Can I have some?”

“Don’t be a sissy,” said Bill. “Let’s get back in line and ride this beast again.”

Dialogue tags stay outside of the quotes and get separated by a comma. But other rules apply in different situations. See our How to Format Dialogue article for all of the specifics.

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