Neither Here nor There…. is a story about, well about many things, it’s deep and complex that way. But, one of the themes that make up the rich and complex texture of the text revolves around a man who finds himself out of his element. More to the point, he is in a foreign country. Now he speaks the language (to a degree, English is his second language) but he is not a native of Oxfordshire (where the oh so charming village of Woodstock lies).
So you would expect a play on dialects, right?
No just no, but HELL NO!
I don’t even know which accent to pick let alone affect. It would end up reading like idiot speak. I hate it when they speak Spanish in American television and it sounds as if the speaker’s favorite pastimes are torturing cats and raping languages.
So what did I do?
I stuck to the bare minimum. Just a few words.
And so on.
Not to say that these words are not used in North American English but they tend to have different meaning. Then you have words that either have no direct reference in another region like “quid” or mean something completely different. A man would never “wear the pants” in a English home, unless he was into cross dressing. I even wrote a whole chapter around “boots” and “bonnets” (save the Little House on the Prairie references for later, ummkay?)
I did include some dialect play, such as “Mum” instead of “Mom” (yes mum is the word when you’re talking about my mother, got that!), or “Wot?” instead of “What?” (because Michael Mendoza is based on Rupert Grint and that’s how he talks). But that’s more spelling than word choice. It’s the difference between armor and armour, one is English, the other one French (ducks for cover as a storm of liquor bottles comers raining down around him).
So I tried not to mess to much with it. I didn’t even bother to translate the few bits of Spanish. Of course the good thing is that while I did use some Puerto Rican terms in those short bits, I avoided dialect speak all together (so someone in Mexico would not laugh out loud when Antonio turns his R’s into L’s).
Now for someone with a better explanation, here is Eddie Izzard!