The Trials and Tribulations of an Aussie writing English in American.

HELP! As many of you know, I’m an Aussie, and Aussie English is closer to English English than American English – To complicate things, my mother was brought up both in England and Canada, so some American-Canadian-English terms and spelling have snuck into my usage/abusage – It seemed kind of natural, given that the majority of my readers are American, to write in American (it seemed easy, too, I just changed my spellchecker to USA English as well as going with what I “knew”) Anyway, there are plenty of American books in Australia, so we’re laid back with the language whichever way it comes.

In my first two books, I’ve written “grey” rather than “gray” (I thought “gray” was English English). To me, it’s “grey” (I like “grey”), but now I understand that “gray” is the correct American term.


What I want to know is, is there leniency in that country toward spelling variations? Or do I have to change it, then go back and reedit and republish my first two books with “gray” rather than “grey”?

For what it’s worth, my US spellcheck doesn’t pick up an error with “grey”, but it also didn’t pick up double Ls in “travelling”, so…

Someone out there, please, I beg you, give me some good news and say it’s okay!

Cheers!  🙂


20 thoughts on “The Trials and Tribulations of an Aussie writing English in American.

  1. Doug Daniel

    Personally, I don’t even notice British spelling– to the point that I occasionally find myself slipping over into it.

    SF fandom is pretty international, at least the English-speaking portion, and I think most of us switch-hit between American usage and British usage in our reading without too much difficulty. “Kerb” might throw some readers, as might “bonnet” (for a car hood), but otherwise, I don’t think it’s a big deal. I certainly wouldn’t go through and respell “grey” in all your books. Not a major problem, imo.

    1. A.D. Everard Post author

      Hi Doug – Thank you so much. That sounds good to me, I think I got most of them sorted out, but that one got by me. I rather figured in this day and age, with everyone crawling all over the Internet, that people were pretty clued in to variation. I just didn’t want to annoy my readership. 🙂

      I appreciate you coming to my rescue. Cheers! 😀

  2. JMS

    So long as you don’t start saying “boot” for a trunk or “pavement” for sidewalk or “Hungry Jack’s” for Burger King (not that I imagine that one would come up too much in SciFi…), I think you’ll be okay!

    1. A.D. Everard Post author

      Hi JMS – Yep, I’ve got trunk covered – no pavements (or sidewalks, for that matter) anywhere and definitely no Hungry Jack’s. 😀

      Thank you, I might just make it! 😀

  3. Therin Knite

    I don’t usually notice non-American spellings, to be honest, because I read a lot of fiction by authors from other English-speaking countries (or books translated into one variant of English or another). I mean, as long as I know what the word is and what it means, I don’t particularly care how it’s spelled. I know other countries use different words and spellings, so I’m not going to get upset when they don’t use American English. That would be very petty.

    Honestly, I wouldn’t be too worried about it. 🙂

    1. A.D. Everard Post author

      That’s what I want to hear. 🙂 I figured it would be okay, it’s just that I seem to be using it a lot in this book, so wanted to be sure.

      So far, everyone has been okay with it, so I shall take your advice and not worry. Thanks! 😀

  4. writingsprint

    For me, “gray” and “grey” are interchangeable. I think, “Oh, the author’s British!” when I read “behaviour” instead of “behavior,” “armour” instead of “armor,” and “organise” or “recognise” as opposed to spelling those two with a “z.” (Which is “zee” rather than “zed” 😉 ). It’s not a big deal, but if you really want an American sound to it I’d keep an eye on it. The good news is your spellchecker should catch differences like these. From what I’ve read so far, you’re doing a fantastic job. The tone sounded neutral, like watching Farscape ;-).

    1. A.D. Everard Post author

      Thank you for that. Ditching the ‘u’ is easy enough, and I tend to spell with zees in any case – what I find weird is that I tend to keep with American when writing my blog. I think that means I should get better at it. 🙂

      Sounds like you’re enjoying it so far, and that brings a smile to my face.

      Thanks, mate. 😀

  5. Rhino House

    When I lived in NJ nobody seems to care, I think you can run with a mélange & it adds a certain flavour. Only in Singapore & India did people seem to get stressed about dialect variants (& they had more than you could shake a stick at).

  6. Yuna

    I don’t mind whether it is English America or English English as long as you are consistent with it. i don’t even always recognize if it was America or English English, except favour = favor, travelling – traveling or the other similar words. From my point of view, you better use the one you comfort and enjoy with and the readers will follow :).

    It has been a long time allyson 🙂 🙂

    1. A.D. Everard Post author

      Hi Yuna – thank you, you are quite right. It is because I wanted to be consistent that I didn’t want to change the spelling in book 3 (and worried about it because I seem to be using that word a lot in this book). 🙂

      Yes, it has been a while. I pretty well dropped out for 3 weeks while sick. I know I managed to keep up some blogging, but abandoned it for a week or so at the worst of it. I am on the mend now, but still catching up on all I have missed out on. I hope you have been well and that you have managed some fun and adventures.


      1. Yuna

        It doesn’t matter. Don’t worry to much, i hope you just enjoy what you’ve been doing :).

        Oh, i’m sorry to hear that, i didn’t even know you was sick, and it was 3 weeks? i hope you recover completely soon 🙂 🙂

        Thank you, I’ve been so well despite the long and exhausting trip 🙂 i enjoyed it.

        Take care and tetap semangat 🙂 🙂

        1. A.D. Everard Post author

          Selamat Siang, Yuna. 🙂

          Thank you, I am much better and almost my old self. 🙂 I’m glad you had a good trip – where were you this time?

          Ah, and I see you’ve snuck another word in! 😀 What is tetap?


        2. Yuna

          Selamat Sore Allyson,

          No worries 🙂

          i was at Southeast Asia, a quick stop at few places :), Siem reap, Bangkok, and Penang 🙂

          I can’t wait my spare time to share the story..

          Cheers 🙂

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