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ESL forum > Grammar and Linguistics > It takes me sometime vs I take sometime    

It takes me sometime vs I take sometime

Cristiane Prates

It takes me sometime vs I take sometime
Hi, dear friends. I īve used the structure "I take sometime to do this", even know I īm aware of "It takes me sometime to do this", but a friend of mine told me that the first example is only acceptable in informal, spoken language, whereas the correct form should be the last one. Is she right? Or are both forms acceptable? I īd appreciate your help and if possible I īd like to help some refernce from a trustable website. Thank you.

3 Sep 2010      

United States

Hi, Cristiane,
First, it should be "some time" and not "sometime".
Now to actually answer your question, it definitely doesn īt sound quite natural to say "I take some time to do this." Another verb, such as "need" would sound good, however.
The other, "It takes me some time to do this" is definitely right and sounds good to me. We use it more often in the future, unless it īs a repeated activity, such as, "Every time I bake a cake, it takes me some time to do it." So, in the future, we say, "Yes, I can fix your car for you, but it will take me some time to do it."
I hope this helps,

3 Sep 2010     

United States

Once again, I agree with Bruce.  (Bruce, you are SOOO smart! Big smile )

And I think you īre wise to request a credible source to back up our argument.  You can always try just running the phrases through a search engine (e.g. Google, Bing) to see what you get, but I īd recommend a corpus.  The one I use is the Corpus of Contemporary American English (http://www.americancorpus.org/ ) because it īs pretty good and it īs free (!)--you don īt even have to register to use it.

When I entered "some time" in the "WORD(S)" box and "take" in the "COLLOCATES" box, I got over 800 hits.  When I changed it to "takes", I got another hundred.  I īd suggest you check it out.  That way you can play with the phrase and see what gets you the most hits (how often that variation of the phrase is used), the context, and how native speakers really use the language.

Good luck!


3 Sep 2010     

Cristiane Prates

Thanks, Bruce! And sorry for the "sometime". But my question wasn īt really clear... Can I say "I take 20 minutes to take a shower" or does it sound wrong? Should I always say "It takes me 20 minutes to take a shower"? Also,  is it ok to ask: "How long do you take to drive to work?" or is it better to ask "How long does it take you to drive to work"?

3 Sep 2010     


"it takes me ...... to do sthing" and "how long does it take you to do sthing" etc are right.
I īve never heard the other expression and I don īt think it īs valid.

3 Sep 2010     

United States

On your second question (Bruce is right about the first):
Both can be used, each has a slightly different meaning though:
"I take 20 minutes to take a shower"-I decide how long it takes me to take the shower (my choice).
"It takes me 20 minutes to take a shower"? --I require 20 minutes (perhaps I can īt do it in a shorter period)

3 Sep 2010     

Cristiane Prates

Thanks for all the wise answers guys. You rock!

3 Sep 2010     


For "How long do you take to drive to work?" vs "How long does it take you to drive to work?"
Both formats are used, the first is more in informal conversations and the second is probably more correct. Teach the second to early learners but advanced learners tell them the second so they recognise it to mean the same when they hear it in conversations.
Hope this helps :)

3 Sep 2010