Common Mistakes with reported speech
As you know Direct Speech is the message of the speaker which is conveyed or reported in his / her own actual words without changing any words in the sentence, but Indirect Speech is the message of the speaker which is conveyed or reported in the speaker’s own words (with some changes to the words). In other words we see no changes in Direct Speech but for Indirect Speech there would be some few changes. You can understand it better by taking a look at the following example:
John: I am very busy now.
Direct Speech: John said, “I am very busy now.”
Indirect Speech: John said that he was very busy then.
Common Mistakes #50
The mistake which is very common between English learners and even English speakers is related to Indirect Speech, which contain some changes to the original speech. Take a look at the following example:
Direct: Sue said, “I’m sick.”
× Indirect: Sue said that she is sick.
✓ Indirect: Sue said that she was sick.
or you can check below example:
Direct: My mother said, “I’m satisfied with my new job.”
× Indirect: My mother said that she is satisfied with his new job.
✓ Indirect: My mother said that she was satisfied with his new job.
So notice the following examples too:
Direct: Mr. president said, “He is going to cut the taxes soon.”
× Indirect: Mr. president said that he is going to cut the taxes soon.
✓ Indirect: Mr. president said that he was going to cut the taxes soon.
Direct: My friend said, “We want to buy a new car.”
× Indirect: My friend said that they want to buy a new car.
✓ Indirect: My friend said that they wanted to buy a new car.
Actually the mistakes which are the subject to our discussion here is this post, would be related to the changes which need to be done to the main speech. In other words when we want to report a speech in an indirect way some grammar rules and structures need to be used. Basically when we report a speech to some one else, we need to back the tense of sentence one time to the previous tense, for example when we report a sentence in present tense, we need to say that in past tense. There are some other changes would be necessary which you can see the most important ones in the following chart: