What is the purpose of Dialogue Tags? Identifying who is speaking in a manuscript for a reader. That’s it. The focus should always be on the dialogue itself. You don’t want a reader to get distracted by the tag

This is a trap new writers often fall into by trying to spice up their dialogue tags. They think words like "asked" or "said" are boring or repetitive, so they try to get creative and use more interesting alternatives. Trust me: The dialogue tag is not the place to get fancy. 

Dialogue tags should be a seamless bridge that moves the reader into the action of the characters words. "Said" and "asked" are all you really need. Resist the urge to use "queried" instead of "asked," or "exclaimed" instead of said.  

Now that you have a quick guide on choosing dialogue tags, let’s talk about how often you should use them. The answer: only as often as you need to, and no more. Quite honestly not every line of dialogue needs a tag. If you feel the reader can't follow the interaction of your characters without a dialogue tag introducing each remark perhaps you need to deepen your character profiles.

But fear not, we'll have a blog post for that!  

Happy editing!