Wednesday, June 24, 2009

WNW: Subjunctive Mood

FIRST, AN ANNOUNCEMENT:

Tonight (Wednesday, June 24) I'm speaking at the Provo Library, 7:00 pm. It's for the Utah Valley Chapter of the League of Utah Writers. Copies of my grammar book will be available at a discount.

I'll be talking about using archetypal characters and plot concepts to create fresh stories using what's called "The Hero's Journey." Whether you're a League member of not, please come! Everyone is welcome.


Now, back to business:

I'm sort of cheating on my Word Nerd Wednesday post today, but for good reason: I've been buried under crazy busy stuff. (Summer slow-down? Ha!)

As a result, we've got a double-dipper post.

You know how sometimes you wonder whether to use was or were in a sentence?

Like:

If she was/were home, she could tell her mom about it.

He wondered if his date was/were cold.

One of those sentences needs was and the other needs were.

Do you know which is which? AND why?

If not, take a gander at my Writing on the Wall post today. It's all about this very thing: subjunctive mood, a section adapted from my book There, Their, They're.

Next week, I hope to have the time to put together something fun about speech acts, something true word nerds can appreciate.



If you can come to the League meeting tonight, I'd appreciate it. It's always nice to NOT talk to a bunch of empty chairs. :)

12 comments:

Kristina P. said...

The first one is were, the second one is was.

Not sure what the rule is though.

Heatherlyn said...

Actually, I have a soft spot for the subjunctive. It's my favorite mood. :)

Jordan McCollum said...

Oh, speech acts!!! Speech acts!!! I'm so freaking excited.

And you're under arrest.

Mwahahaha.

Annette Lyon said...

Jordan, you bring me joy the way only another word nerd can. :D

L.T. Elliot said...

I'm a true word nerd!! Or lover of word nerds! (Not so much a lover of candy nerds. But the geeky kind of regular nerds are okay.)

I'm going to try and make it tonight but I can't make any promises. =[ Either way, know that I'm there in heart!

Melissa J. Cunningham said...

Good luck tonight! Sure wish we lived closer.

Amanda D said...

Good luck tonight! I hope it went well. Would have loved to be there.

Kimberly said...

So wish I could have been there! Dang this whole living hundreds of miles away nonsense! Grr!

Lara said...

If I had never learned any foreign languages I couldn't have told you why the first one uses were. But since I have, I understand it. English grammar was always just kind of a feel it out thing for me. I truly became a grammar junkie when trying to understand other languages.

I guess what I'm trying to say is that I'm thankful that you're out there explaining it to everyone!

Heather B. Moore said...

So how did the LUW meeting go?

Annette Lyon said...

The meeting went great--thanks for asking! I always love talking to and hanging around other writers.

Jo said...

I hope your library thing goes well! I think I have the was, were thing down now.

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