I have an idea/ I'll tell you what Could they be interchangeable in a conversation to express that you have something in mind?
Nov 25, 2014 8:22 AM
Answers · 3
They could, but there is a difference. "I have an idea" is used when you have a new thought. "I'll tell you what" is usually used when you are making a deal with someone. Examples: I have an idea. Let's go to the movies. (a new idea or plan) I'll tell you what. I'll go to the movies if you buy popcorn. (a deal)
November 25, 2014
their usage overlaps a lot. starting a sentence with 'i have an idea' usually means that you actually have a new idea that you want to talk about, but 'i'll tell you what' is usually used more generally to describe more than just an individual idea. the distinction is very subtle and i don't think i can explain it very well, unfortunately.
November 25, 2014
I have an idea is used when you are making plans or solving a problem. I'll tell you what is when you are negotiating or perhaps bargaining. These are just a few examples. They are not necessarily interchangeable.
November 25, 2014
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