Writing Tip For The Day
When in doubt, use ‘said’ when attributing dialogue. What you want as a writer is for your reader to forget you actually exist, and enter the story you’re telling, believing it’s real. Nothing will pull them out of the ‘reality’ of your book more than bad attribution of dialogue, or excessive variety of attribution. So, “said” is perfectly fine attribution for dialogue in novels. Don’t labor to find such synonyms as uttered, pronounced, responded, or retorted. They’ll only destroy the credibility of your story.