Silent Speech

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Silent Speech :

In reporting "silent speech"—noting that language is "said," but internally and not spoken out loud—writers are on their own. Writers can put quotation marks around it or not:

  • Oh, what a beautiful morning, Curly said to himself.

  • "Oh, what a beautiful morning!" Curly said to himself.

  • Some writers will set such unspoken language in italics or indent it in order to set it off from other "regular" language. That's probably not a good idea if there is a lot of it because the indents can be confusing and italics can become tiresome to read after a while. The decision will probably depend on the amount of silent speech within the text. Probably the best way to handle silent speech is to find an author whom you like who does a lot of this — Graham Swift in his novel Last Orders, for instance—and copy that author's style. Consistency, of course, is very important.

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