Principles of Print to Braille Transcription
BRL REFERENCE DESK
Tools and resources
Plays, Dialogue, and Interview Format
- Format for plays, dialogue, and interviews. Plays and other materials that are printed in dialogue form must be transcribed as provided below.
- Cast of characters
(1) If a heading is shown in print, follow the provisions given in Rule 4. When the case of characters must be continued on one or more braille pages, repeat the heading followed by (cont.) at the top of the succeeding pages.
(2) Ignore any special typefaces shown in the print text and use only the single capital indicator before the names of all characters.
(3) If names and identifications are printed side by side in two columns, ignore this format. The cast of characters must be brailled as a list with each name starting in cell 1 and all runovers aligned in cell 3.
(a) Follow print copy for the punctuation used to separate names from any following identifications. When no print punctuation is shown, insert a braille dash to separate the names from their identifications.
(4) When it is necessary to continue a play from one braille volume to another, the cast of characters must be repeated at the front of the second volume. Omit the print page number (if any) and place the repeated cast of characters on a preliminary page (or pages) in the order given in Rule 2, Section 1b.
(b) If a single identification is shown for several characters, this identification must follow the name of the first character as provided above. Following the braille dash after each succeeding name in the group, leave a blank cell before inserting the braille ditto symbol (5,2). The ditto symbol must be included in the special symbols list according to Rule 2, Section 5.
- Speakers and dialogue. Use only the single capital indicator before the names or abbreviated names of all speakers and characters. Ignore special print typefaces except where italics are required to show emphasis in dialogue.
(1) Speakers' names. Begin each speaker's name or abbreviated name in cell 1. Follow the print copy for punctuation shown after the name of each speaker. If no punctuation is shown in print, insert a braille colon. Dialogue must start on the same braille line when space permits.
(2) Runovers of dialogue
(a) In prose dialogue, all runovers must begin in cell 3.
(3) Numbered lines of dialogue. When lines of dialogue are numbered in the print text, follow the provisions given in Rule 11, Section 1.
(b) In verse dialogue, after the first line, begin other lines of dialogue in cell 3. The runovers of all poetic lines of dialogue must begin in cell 5.
(4) Simultaneous speakers. When print enclosure signs are used to indicate that two or more characters speak at the same time, the enclosure signs must be ignored and these speeches must be preceded by the following transcriber's note.
Together: First speaker's name, second speaker's name, etc.
Indicate the resumption of normal dialogue by the following transcriber's note.
(a) To set off a sequence of three or more simultaneous speeches, insert a blank line before the first and after the second transcriber's note placed as required in (4) above.
(5) Shared poetic lines. In a verse play, when a single poetic line is divided between two or more speakers, insert a double dash preceded by a blank cell at the end of the incomplete line(s). Following punctuation used after the name of each succeeding speaker, insert a double dash, preceded and followed by a blank cell to indicate the continuation of the poetic line(s). Explain this usage on the Transcriber's Notes page(s) or in a transcriber's note, similar to that shown below, inserted before the beginning of the play.
(b) If dialogue of the simultaneous speakers is printed in columns, disregard this format and braille the speeches as directed above.
The braille double dash indicates an interrupted or shared poetic line.
- Scene settings. Follow print copy to braille the settings of scenes in blocked or indented paragraph form, ignoring any special typeface shown in the text. A blank line must be left to separate a scene setting from the dialogue that follows.
- Stage directions, audio or video cues. Ignore any special print typeface used for stage directions, audio or video cues, but retain the enclosure signs. If no enclosure signs are shown, use parentheses to enclose these materials in the braille edition.
(1) Stage directions or cues after a speaker's name. Follow the print copy for stage directions or cues shown directly after a speaker's name. Such material must precede the punctuation shown in print or the braille colon that is inserted after the speaker's name in accordance with Section 1b(1) above.
(2) Stage directions or cues within lines of dialogue. Follow the print copy for stage directions or cues that are printed within the lines of dialogue.
(3) Stage directions or cues outside lines of dialogue. Do not insert blank lines before or after stage directions or cues that are printed outside or between the lines of dialogue.
(a) In prose dialogue, stage directions or cues must be left-adjusted starting in cell 5. When several paragraphs are shown, begin each paragraph in cell 7.
(b) In verse dialogue, stage directions or cues must be left-adjusted started in cell 7. When several paragraphs are shown, begin each paragraph in cell 9.
(c) If the dialogue consists of both prose and verse, stage directions or cues must be left-adjusted, starting in cell 5 following prose and in cell 7 following verse.
- Reference marks and notes in plays and dialogue. Reference marks must be transcribed according to Rule 12, Section 1. The format of notes must be in accordance with Rule 12, Section 3b.
- Placement of notes in dialogue
(1) In prose dialogue, notes must start in cell 7 with runovers in cell 5.
(2) Inverse dialogue, notes must start in cell 9 with runovers in cell 7.
(3) If the dialogue consists of both prose and verse, notes must be indented according to the material in which they appear.
- Placement of notes with stage directions or cues. When stage directions or cues that are printed in blocked format precede or follow a note, a blank line must be left between the note and the directions. However, if the note refers to the stage direction or the cue itself, no blank line is required before the note.
(1) In prose plays, notes to cues or directions must start in cell 9 with runovers in cell 7.
(2) In verse plays, notes to cues or directions must start in cell 11 with runovers in cell 9.