How to use dialogue tags effectively

Looking for another dialogue tag other than “said?”

Don’t know about you but I do tire of using he said, she said over and over. I’m sure readers tire of seeing this tag peppered throughout a book.


But what to use instead?

Thanks to my favorite Ape, I found The Mad Scribbler and an extensive list of alternative tags.

Creating Tone through Dialogue

Now I’m not sure all of these words work but the list does give me ideas for adding action to a conversation.

How about you? Do you think the word “said” is overused?

What about some of the words on the Mad Scribbler’s list? Would you use them?

Want more suggestions? Go to links at bottom of post.

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Over 200 words to use instead of said. 

The Use and Abuse of Dialogue Tags



14 thoughts on “How to use dialogue tags effectively

  1. I don’t mind using said. What I do like to see is a description of the expression or something to show me body language. I read somewhere body language is actually around 75% in a dialogue exchange 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Said doesn’t bother me. Most of the time, unless more than two people are talking, there’s no need for a tag at all. Frequently substituting words other than said can be a distracting effort for the sake of unnecessary novelty in my view.

    Liked by 1 person

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