"Could it be?" she asked herself perplexedly. "But my teachers told me the word 'said' is boring!"
As long as I've been writing stories, I've shunned the word "said" as if it killed my dog. My characters whispered, shouted, retorted, responded, replied, parried, thrusted, and riposted. Do creative dialogue tags make writing spicier, more exciting? Or is this one of those things you're better off leaving after high school, like inverted-pyramid essay structure and canvas hi-tops? (Kids still wear those, right?)