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Bigbunny
03-30-2006, 10:55 PM
Question for you:

I know the technical answer as to when to use WHO vs. WHOM, or WHOEVER vs. WHOMEVER, but as I thought about it, I don't recall seeing WHOM or WHOMEVER in my reading lately.

Is there a shift in contemporary fiction away from the proper use of WHOM/WHOMEVER?

Thanks.

Maryn
03-31-2006, 02:12 AM
Sure. If the narrator's voice is casual, or the speaker of the dialogue informal, it's going to reflect how people actually speak rather than what's grammatically correct.

When somebody calls on the phone and asks to speak to the person who answered, I bet less than one percent says, "It is I." The rest say, "It's me," even though that is technically incorrect. I'm certainly not going to stick "It is I" in my character's mouth. Are you?

Maryn, whose mom dodged the bullet with "This is she" (and sounded all hoity-toity doing it)

Bigbunny
03-31-2006, 05:21 AM
True. I'd never use whom/whomever in dialogue. So I guess it's OK to use who/whoever in the narrative without being called on it?

Sage
03-31-2006, 06:05 AM
Ugh. Similarly, my last beta reader tried to correct the grammer in the dialogue of my 14-year-old & 12-year-old (mindset) characters. She changed "who"s to "whom"s & rearranged sentences ending in prepositions so that they read much more formally.

reph
03-31-2006, 06:12 AM
When somebody calls on the phone and asks to speak to the person who answered, I bet less than one percent says, "It is I." The rest say, "It's me," even though that is technically incorrect.
The correct phone phrase is "This is she." "It is I" is a reply to "Who's there?" in a knock-knock situation.

On the phone, I resort to "Speaking" or "This is Ms. ____" so I won't sound like an uneducated idiot or an overeducated idiot. Often I'm spared the choice because I'm instead telling the caller the correct pronunciation of my name.

arrowqueen
04-01-2006, 02:38 AM
Scene - the gates of Heaven:

Knock, knock...

'Who's there?'

'It is I.'

'Oh, Christ. Not another bloody English teacher!'

Jamesaritchie
04-01-2006, 05:20 AM
Sure. If the narrator's voice is casual, or the speaker of the dialogue informal, it's going to reflect how people actually speak rather than what's grammatically correct.

When somebody calls on the phone and asks to speak to the person who answered, I bet less than one percent says, "It is I." The rest say, "It's me," even though that is technically incorrect. I'm certainly not going to stick "It is I" in my character's mouth. Are you?

Maryn, whose mom dodged the bullet with "This is she" (and sounded all hoity-toity doing it)

Yep, your mom got it right.

As for dialogue, it simply must reflect the character. If the character is someone who would say "whom," then you have to use "whom." If not, you use "who."

reph
04-01-2006, 06:04 AM
If your character is a picky, self-conscious person who's insecure about grammar and etiquette, you can have her say "This is she pardon me, I mean I no, I mean me I mean, this is LaVerne speaking" until the caller hangs up. It was probably a telemarketer anyway.

Chacounne
04-01-2006, 06:55 AM
Reph ... that is the best laugh I've had all day; thank you.

Hugs,
Chac

Bigbunny
04-02-2006, 11:29 AM
If your character is a picky, self-conscious person who's insecure about grammar and etiquette, you can have her say "This is she pardon me, I mean I no, I mean me I mean, this is LaVerne speaking"

LOLOLOL, this sounds like my character!

reph
04-02-2006, 11:53 AM
Writers are advised to listen to real people to find out how they talk. I got a surprise today when I called the hair salon. Usually the owner answers. A woman answered with the name of the salon. I said "I'd like to make an appointment with Kim" (name changed for privacy). The voice said "This is she." It didn't sound far-fetched. I wouldn't have given it a second thought but for this recent discussion.

Akuma
04-06-2006, 03:13 AM
Writers are advised to listen to real people to find out how they talk. I got a surprise today when I called the hair salon. Usually the owner answers. A woman answered with the name of the salon. I said "I'd like to make an appointment with Kim" (name changed for privacy). The voice said "This is she." It didn't sound far-fetched. I wouldn't have given it a second thought but for this recent discussion.

What if your name is Kim, and you only said that to throw us off?

Huh?

Huh?!

Yeah, sorry, I'm kind of bored.

Class dismissed.

Akuma
04-06-2006, 03:18 AM
You're all going to jump down my throat for this one but I am seriously having a brain-fart right now.

"Whose" is the possessive one, right?

Akuma <--- an extremely paranoid and needy person.

reph
04-06-2006, 04:25 AM
What if your name is Kim, and you only said that to throw us off?
My name isn't Kim, but the reason for using that name is that the hairdresser's name isn't Kim.

"Whose" is the possessive form of "who" as an interrogative pronoun and of "which."

kybudman
04-13-2006, 01:27 PM
"May I please speak with M***** Fields, please?" (Using my given name is a killer clue that tells me the caller does NOT know me)

In self defense, my answer to the caller is: "This is." I let them finish it. Sometimes, I have to wait while their minds complete the thought. But it works.

I think this started in the same mall as "We're going to the Malt Shoppe. Do you wanna go with?" (ackkkkkkkkk)

Bud

Chickenchargrill
04-13-2006, 01:46 PM
If someone phones and asks, "Is that Victoria *****?" I always just say 'it is'.

If someone asks.. "Could I speak to Victoria *****?" I just say, "You can."


Hold on, that's no strictly true, if someone asks for 'Victoria' I say no and hang up. If they say Vicky, then I'll wait to see who it is.