To me the use of ellipses, em dashes, and the use of italics to emphasis specific words are very much a part of both the author’s voice but more importantly the character’s voice. Some critiquers have said nothing about the amount of each of these included in my story, while others have had a fit. I want to say, “Have you talked with any teenagers recently, especially teen girls?” My female main character’s POV includes many more these style type things than does the male character’s POV. It’s part of what’s different about their voice.
Would LOVE your take on this,
You’re trying to write the teen accent, girl, and written accents almost always distract. The writing becomes about using typographical trickery to force the printed words to make certain sounds in readers’ minds, and the reading experience becomes a conscious effort to read the accent rather than focus on the content. Distraction city. Readers should sink into your story, not recite it. Don’t get me wrong, total thumbs up for trying to create an authentic teen voice. But don’t confuse “authentic” with mimicry. Real-life talking is a mess of meandering, stuttery gobbledygook. Writers approximate real-life talking styles to keep their fiction accessible even as they create voice. A book full of forced accent like “Oh my gawd! I was so, like, mortified—what with being a girl and all…”, can overwhelm readers, especially kids. Stop forcing it. Instead, use action between the lines of dialogue to create emphasis, and use repetition and hyperbole: “I full-on dive into the car and then ball up on the floorboard with my jacket over my head. Kill me now. Just kill me now and get it over with. Life at Derkson High is a living nightmare.” Less distracting, more dynamic, totally teen.