Text Messages and Email

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Thread: Text Messages and Email

  1. #1

    Text Messages and Email

    I've looked around a bit and it seems the way to format quoted text messages or email is by indenting and using italics. As there were no cell phones or internet on my Commodore 64 when I learned basic grammar, I would love to know what the consensus is regarding formatting these communications. I've seen some people say to use a different font, but that seems like a decision for the publisher not the author.

    Opinions?
    How do you get a musician off your front porch?

    Pay for the pizza.

  2. #2
    So long as you are consistent with any style you choose, when it comes to editing via a publisher, they'll be formatted to meet their house style anyway, so I wouldn't worry about it too much.

    The only difference that might come in is if you've subbing via snail mail (post instead email). Some UK companies do like words underlined that are intended for italics (So this instead of this) but only some. Most US publishers don't follow that rule. That's mostly only for paper submission, not email.

    Never be afraid to ask and clarify, whether or not it goes by email or snail mail.

    When just getting it down, though, I usually just use italics and blend it in with the the rest of the narrative:

    C'mon, just talk to me.
    Jase ran a touch over the screen, tracing the text, then thumbed a reply. Take a hint and leave it okay.
    What? No smiley with that? Want me to send u one? I've got a BDSM-badass one for ya. Minion-style.
    Jase grunted. You stick a smiley anywhere near a message and I'll tattoo it to your ass.
    U smilin now?
    He was.

  3. #3
    Quote Originally Posted by Aquilo View Post
    C'mon, just talk to me.
    Jase ran a touch over the screen, tracing the text, then thumbed a reply. Take a hint and leave it okay.
    What? No smiley with that? Want me to send u one? I've got a BDSM-badass one for ya. Minion-style.
    Jase grunted. You stick a smiley anywhere near a message and I'll tattoo it to your ass.
    U smilin now?
    He was.
    This is perfectly clear to me. I just didn't know if there were any rules concerning the "new" forms of communication.
    How do you get a musician off your front porch?

    Pay for the pizza.

  4. #4
    If it's a long stretch, I've seen some format it as:

    15:00 (GMT): When are are we going?
    15.03 (GMT): bout and hour.
    15:06 (GMT): U wanna get a grab some tnt first?
    15.10 (GMT): Dynamite?
    15:14 (GMT): Tea n toast, pratt.

    The time zone distinctions (GMT) come in for showing the likes of time differences between US states etc.

    Sometimes names are used:

    Jeff: When are are we going?
    Sue: bout and hour.
    Jeff: U wanna grab some t&t first?
    Sue: Dynamite?
    Jeff: Tea & toast, pratt.

    This would then be formatted separately from the narrative -- deeper indent, extra line space before it starts, extra after it finishes.

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