Asked or Said?

Readers Bill and Julie noticed a language trend that's rubbing them the wrong way.

"One of our pet peeves is the evolving usage of 'said' instead of 'asked' immediately preceding the utterance of a question." Here's an example they offered: "He said, 'Where are you going?'"

"We are hearing this more and more often in everyday conversations involving questions, in TV advertisements and on social media," Bill and Julie wrote.

"Do you have any idea why? Is it because 'said' is easier to pronounce than the tongue twister 'asked'? We were taught one shouldn't say a question. A question should always be asked," they added.

 It's an interesting observation, and it touches on an important subject for writers: speech tags. Here are some tips from my recent column.


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