Single or double quotes around you in the second line?


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Thread: Single or double quotes around you in the second line?

  1. #1
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    Single or double quotes around you in the second line?

    “You called us,” Rob said. “It was you. We wouldn't be having this conversation if Parisa's behavior hadn't struck you as being a little bit odd.”

    Each time he said 'you', Rob stabbed his finger at me, as if he were accusing me of something.
    ...taking a trip, not taking a trip...

  2. #2
    I would have it in italics. It stands out that way without quotes.

    Or you could do away with the second line and make it clear he's pointing during the first sentence.

    "Life is a risk; so is writing. You have to love it." ~ Richard Matheson

  3. #3
    Great writing. I'm excited. I vote for not changing a thing.

    I read through this: http://www.slate.com/blogs/lexicon_v...te_simple.html.

    It was hard to follow. Apparently the single quotes is a long standing practice, though not grammatically approved of in American English. British English might be different. The article above was complaining about it still being used to today (but see the part about it being hard to follow).

    Italics seems to be preferred, grammatically, but YOU can't use them in the second sentence because you used them in the first sentence. Double quotes seems to be ugly, for the reasons described in the above article. (But see problems in understanding.)

    And remember -- you are writing for your reader. I don't think readers will have any trouble with the single quotes.
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  4. #4
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    Thank you both! I think I will leave this as is, although I have other examples where I don't italicize the repeated word first, that might benefit from italics when restated. I appreciate your help.
    ...taking a trip, not taking a trip...

  5. #5
    Use double quotes when you're just quoting all or part of someone's words. Use single quotes when you quote something within a quote:

    Carla said, "'I don't want a political firestorm.' That's what the President said. So, I handled the situation as delicately as I could."

    However, I personally like italics for "you" in your example.
    John Oberon
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  6. #6
    If you're using double quotes for the dialogue, you should be using double quotes around "you." The only special rules for quotes apply if you have a quote within a quote; otherwise, treat them all the same.
    "Either write something worth reading or do something worth writing." - Benjamin Franklin

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