Asked • 06/28/19

Must every piece of speech get its own paragraph?

I've had a few people read pieces of narrative writing I've done, and they seem to take issue with the fact that I sometimes put a piece of speech inline with the rest of a non-dialogue paragraph, like so:> Jill found a box of mints she liked and took it off the shelf. She walked up to the cashier. "How much is this?" she asked, holding it up.> "Two fifty," replied the cashier. Jill handed him the money, took the mints, and left the store.Sometimes it's part of, or sandwiched in the middle of, a longer paragraph, like this:> As Jill walked home, the mints jiggled happily in the box in her pocket, as if they were waiting to be eaten. Suddenly, the box snapped open and one mint fell out. "Dammit," said Jill, bending down to pick it up. As she picked it up, eyeing it, she noticed that the mint didn't have any dirt on it at all, despite falling onto the dirty, wet sidewalk. "I guess you're spoiled anyway, so I can't bring you to Fran," muttered Jill, so she popped it in her mouth. Suddenly, she felt changes occurring in her.Is there actually a style rule against this? Does it actually make it more confusing for the reader?

1 Expert Answer

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Rebecca P. answered • 06/28/19

Writing Coach in APA, MLA, Chicago, ASA, and other formats

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