I always find myself wondering how to format written text: news (on TV and newspapers), text messages (from a cellphone), lyrics, and poems. Right now, I just put them in a new paragraph and italicize them. Example:
It occurred to Maria to check her phone for text messages. She went to her purse to get it. There was indeed a message from James.
My boss just called. One of the freezers broke last night so we have to move all the food to another one before it gets bad. I think I'll spend the whole morning on it. Have breakfast first. I'll call u as soon as I'm done.
Maria let out a sigh. How could James stand this? She thought his boss
Taking a bite of her sandwich, Eri pulled her notebook out of her purse, and re-read what she had written yesterday.
Eri, did you feel the earthquake last night?
Are you really sure your apartment's alright?
As though they were some kind of secret code, she examined each of the words. Then she fished for pen, and added two more lines.
In which planet where you wandering when it came?
Is reality and the world as you know still the same?
Eri put down her pen and sipped her cup.
Making sure there were no other customers, she brought them back to her sea, and began scanning each headline.
Typhoon Jelawat Kills 62 in Okinawa. Dangerous Toxin Found in Fish for Sale. Price of Rice Raised. Employment Rate Going Down. Tina folded the newspaper and moved to the next one. Taxi Collides with Car Causing 5 Deaths. Man Arrested for Trying to Rob a McDonald's. Temperatures forecast to be higher than average for Aug-Sept. Woman Finds Hat in a Tree.
By the time Tina was done, she had read nearly forty headlines.
I looked around Google and some say one should use block quotes. What's the conventional way of formatting these things?