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  #1    
Old September 3rd, 2009, 06:21 AM
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I assume both are common and acceptable, but was wondering what everyone else knew or thought on the subject.

If I recall, my history of English book (that I happen to gloss over), mentions italics for the purpose of singling out an idea, or something to that effect, I'd have to review it again (though of course there is probably more than one use).

I myself tend to use quotations. I think when I first started RPing, I used Italics for thoughts, but changed to quotations.
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  #2    
Old September 3rd, 2009, 07:53 AM
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I use italics for thoughts since quotes I usually use it for dialogue. If I use quotes for both thoughts and dialogue, I (and the readers) might get confused. ;
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  #3    
Old September 3rd, 2009, 08:23 AM
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I personally use “quoted italics” for thoughts. Italics are already of use for emphasis and quotes for dialogue, andif one character is thinking in short bursts, italicizing random parts of texts can quickly become confusing and redherringing.

However I'm always open to the possibility of using other quoting style to differentiate self-dialogue or thought-dialogue from spoken-dialogue. We're in the Unicode era, after all, and there's a lot of quoting models to choose from. In Spanish, spoken-dialogue is delimited by a left hyphen and quotes for thoughts are a given and easier to grasp, but since I started writing in English I had to look for alternative methods or I would end up with all characters speaking nothing but their thoughts...
Right now, I am using «guillemotes» for telepathic-dialogue, for example, and ‹pointed brackets› or some form of capitalization to mark voice from speaker such as the Pokédex or a train departure announcement, for example.

All in all, it's essentially italics for thought, just with a bit more work to make them more distinct from the text.
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  #4    
Old September 3rd, 2009, 09:06 AM
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I use italics inside of quotes, too. For some reason I recall a teacher way back when telling the class that was the way to handle thoughts.
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Old September 3rd, 2009, 11:35 AM
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I use neither. I kind of describe what the person is thinking, rather than type it out exactly. For example:

Quote:
Originally Posted by Eon Chronicles
“So, the boy has found Latias,” he said to himself. Good. Things were beginning to fall into place.
That last part is a thought.
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  #6    
Old September 3rd, 2009, 08:13 PM
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I put thoughts in italics, so as to make clear the distinction between speaking and thinking.
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  #7    
Old September 5th, 2009, 10:53 AM
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I used to use italics to define thinking, and do with script in real life. However, I've since been considering switching to 'one-apostrophe quotes,' because it's easy to use ad you don't need to run through the chapter with [i] tags at the ready for a forum that doesn't support retaining formats, and don't need to delete them if it does.

So basically...

Come on, Casey, the boy silently scolded himself, quit thinking about that! It’s over! It’s going to get found and I never even touched that thing and nobody can possibly link its appearance to me!
turns into...

'Come on, Casey,' the boy silently scolded himself, 'quit thinking about that! It’s over! It’s going to get found and I never even touched that thing and nobody can possibly link its appearance to me!'
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  #8    
Old September 5th, 2009, 04:34 PM
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I've always used quotes for thoughts, but I do include italics in some parts. I remember writing something once and I did use Italics for thoughts, but they were also part of the narration.
But 'till now, I've only seen thoughts written in Italics. For some odd reason, I did the opposite. <.<
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  #9    
Old September 5th, 2009, 06:29 PM
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On a diffrent site I used a random color for thoughts... so someones thoughts went like this...

"Oh come on, it doesnt hurt that much." He said, before a quick thought ran through his mind, It just hurts a hell lot more than you think.
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  #10    
Old September 6th, 2009, 01:58 PM
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I always use italics. I really don't see why that supposedly creates a problem when italics are also used to single out emphasized words and the like; it's pretty simple for a reader to apply the rule that if it's a whole sentence (perhaps broken by a 'dialogue tag' of "he thought") in italics, it's a thought, and if it's a single word or phrase, it's emphasis. Using quotes for thoughts makes me begin to think it's being said aloud when I'm reading and so it's just not comfortable to me. Single quotes just about work too, but I still prefer italics.

From there, it is also very natural to make telepathic speech a mix of both by giving that both quotes and italics, which automatically carries both the implication that it's being "spoken" and "thought" - unlike using random special quotation marks or colors that the reader will have to get used to interpreting correctly.
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  #11    
Old September 6th, 2009, 02:04 PM
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I tend to deal with thoughts in the narrative rather than having the character "speak" them.

But then, back when I did loads of fanfiction where I did write out thoughts, I used to use italics.
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  #12    
Old September 7th, 2009, 12:30 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by txteclipse View Post
I use neither. I kind of describe what the person is thinking, rather than type it out exactly.
That's basically what I'd use, although I also use direct thoughts in italics. First-third-person?
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  #13    
Old September 7th, 2009, 07:49 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dragonfree View Post
Using quotes for thoughts makes me begin to think it's being said aloud when I'm reading and so it's just not comfortable to me. Single quotes just about work too, but I still prefer italics.
Amen for pretty much this entire thing. And besides, it's more the convention in print is to have italics for thoughts, so.
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  #14    
Old September 8th, 2009, 06:16 PM
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I prefer "The boy is bored," over "I'm bored, thought the boy." I don't know why, but it just seems more professional that way.
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Old September 9th, 2009, 12:23 AM
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Well, that really isn't the best example; people really are bored, rather than just thinking, "I'm bored." It would be more sensible to make an example of a thought like, "I haven't called my parents in a while, thought the boy. They must be worried," which could be written as "He hadn't called his parents in a while. They must be worried." And I usually do the latter too. However, then you have thoughts that can't easily be converted to indirect thoughts, such as anything containing a direct address (Take that, Jake! he thought). And when you've got telepathy in the story, you can have a non-telepathic POV character's ordinary thoughts picked up by a telepath as speech, in which case I would call it incorrect to format the non-telepathic character's thoughts exactly like actual telepathic speech (and somewhat impractical, since it might alert the reader to the fact the telepath is listening before the character finds out, momentarily breaking the fourth wall).
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  #16    
Old September 9th, 2009, 07:10 AM
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I don't on the whole need to enunciate the thoughts of my characters; most of my writing is in first person, in a format that is already an (unusually well-structured) sort of inner monologue.

In one of my stories telepathy of different forms had different notation (all flowing as well as it should with the narrative, of course). The main character's own thoughts feel different from the thoughts of his oldest companion, say, or another telepath; and so one has italics and the other does not (while both are designated by square brackets). It's not exactly unwieldy to interpret because it hardly needs to be interpreted; it's the ornamentation of the thought rather than the mode of understanding the thought, and shades it a different way rather than actually defining it. What could get more confusing is that brackets can also signify thoughts of the character that were too vague to be properly articulated, but that the recorder nevertheless picked up; but I think it isn't difficult to distinguish between the two.

It always puzzles me when thinking is shown as more or less adjacent to speaking, so that the only difference between thoughts and words is that no one is supposed to hear the former. (Exclamations and words the thinker doesn't want to say are fine enough, but when every thought is spelled out as though the thinker were explaining it to the reader, it seems really odd.) I usually only think the same way I would talk if I'm framing what I'm about to say, or as a sort of idle play-acting. Are other minds different?
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Old September 9th, 2009, 07:33 AM
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I used to use 'quotes' but now I just Italicize it because it seems more clear.
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  #18    
Old September 16th, 2009, 07:47 AM
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I italicize thoughts because I find it much easier to read that way.
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  #19    
Old September 16th, 2009, 09:38 AM
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For those who use quotations, do you change the narrative in the speech to be first person, or just as simply use 'thought' instead of 'said'?

I tend to keep it 3rd person, so I use the 'thought' portion. Of course, I'd vary it a bit, so it wouldn't sound redundant. Like use of: ponder, starred off [vacant stare] and a few others.
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