Classy Quotes Wednesday–GATSBY

Robert Redford as Gatsby–GQ Magazine cover March 13, 1974

I was stymied for what to use for my classy quotes Wednesday today. Finally, I landed on one of the bazillions of cleverly-turned phrases in The Great Gatsby, by F. Scott Fitzgerald.

This particular phrase illustrates some well-placed dialogue. Yes, there are dialogue tags like “he remarked,” but sometimes I think it helps the flow.

There’s a Gatsby movie coming out, with a very tanned-looking Leonardo diCaprio playing Gats. I’m afraid it will take one mighty strong performance to replace Robert Redford in that role. Robert Redford just IS Gats to me.

Here’s the line–wonder if they’ll leave it in the movie?

Gatsby turned to me rigidly:
“I can’t say anything in his house, old sport.”
“She’s got an indiscreet voice,” I remarked. “It’s full of–” I hesitated.
“Her voice is full of money,” he said suddenly.

****I see an adverb in there! How do you feel about adverbs and dialogue tags? Do they distract or add to the flow? And do you like Fitzgerald?****


8 thoughts on “Classy Quotes Wednesday–GATSBY

  1. Not sure about the dialogue tags, cuz sometimes they, along with adverbs, add a bit of kick.Here's an example, "Magua isn't real?" she asked, ruefully and with apathetically deluded and overly ridiculous sigh.See? EPIC literature, right there!!

  2. Can you believe I've never watched the Robert Redford Gatsby? I'll have to check it out before seeing the one staring diCaprio.Yeah, I have to admit, adverbs distract me from the story flow. Every time I see one, the wheels in my brain are spinning, working to come up with stronger wording. Not that I'm claiming to know better than Fitzgerald. He was a great writer. As far as dialouge tags, if I can replace it with an action beat, I do. 🙂

  3. Okay. I'm REALLY bad about dialogue tags. I use them. A lot. I think the adverbs slip in there a lot, too, but I do get distracted by them, I have to admit. Sometimes I put so many in my MS that my characters could be doing modern jazz dancing…

  4. Becky, I know you're not that bad! I think you have appropriate adverb usage. I'm fond of adverbs and dialogue tags, so I kinda hate to see them go the way of the dinosaur. After all, the classics used them liberally. We're just not living in the classics age…sigh.

  5. Adverbs make a point that commas just cant make, like making a character hesistate and dialouge tags are just nessecary (most of the time) but I agree with Gwendolyn, if I can replace on with an action, I will just because I love body language.

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