Let's talk a minute about the use of literary conventions, shall we? Why do we use paragraphs, periods, capital letters, and quotation marks?What are the proper uses of literary conventions?
What are conventions? Convention: (1) a rule or practice based upon general consent and upheld by society at large; (2) an arbitrary rule or practice recognized as valid in any particular art or discipline, such as literature or art. (Literary Terms)
I just finished reading a lovely book, Evidence of Things Unseen by Marianne Wiggins. I loved the book and hated the book in equal measure. I loved the story and the characters and I hated it that the author left out quotation marks, making it very difficult to read the dialogue or to figure out who was speaking. Here is an example of the text from the book:
Where's the traveling ditto circus off to this weekend? Flash said as they stood together in the half-deserted street. I got a date with Moby in the morning if you want to witness it for history. And Fos, if you say Call me Ishmael again you're gonna fry. No offense, dit, but your husband isn't funny. ---Evidence of Things Unseen, p.109See what I mean? It is very difficult to tell who is talking.
Join in the discussion. How do you feel about it when authors don't use customary literary conventions? Have you ever experienced frustration when reading something where typical literary conventions weren't used? Share your thoughts, please.