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I need to typeset a dialogue in LaTeX, it's for a translation assignment. The original dialogue does something like this:

- I found it, I told him.
My finger was in the book, where George Best's autograph was. My da was
sitting in his chair.
- Did you? he said. - Good man. What?
- What?
- What did you find?
- The autograph, I told him.
He was messing.

I would like to keep that formatting without resorting to \\ and such. I found the dialogue package on CTAN, but it doesn't seem to be what I'm looking for.

Any ideas?

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1  
Exactly what is it that you want to avoid in your code? I see no reason for not letting LaTeX know where you want your line breaks. What's wrong with `\\`? –  Tomas Lycken Sep 27 '10 at 14:17
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1 Answer

up vote 10 down vote accepted

Really depends on how long you need this to go for and how fussy you are. Based on your description I'd define something like

\setlength\parindent{0pt}
\setlength\parskip{1ex plus 2pt minus 1pt}
\newcommand\X{\par\noindent---~}

and write

\X I found it, I told him.

My finger was in the book, where George Best's autograph was. My da was
sitting in his chair.

\X Did you? he said. ---~Good man. What?
\X What?
\X What did you find?
\X The autograph, I told him.

He was messing.

No need to be fancy.

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The text is only ~2 pages long, and I'm not very picky with the final results. I was only curious off the alternatives. But the \setlength-parts above, can they be applied only to a certain area of the document? –  Oscar Oct 1 '10 at 22:28
    
Sure! But best to do it when you're between paragraphs to avoid odd surprises. –  Will Robertson Oct 2 '10 at 2:02
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