In the past subjunctive, however, the situation is more fluid. Historically the past subjunctive of be is were for all persons, singular and plural: I wish she were here; Suppose I were rich; If only they weren't so expensive. It is quite common, though, to use was instead of were for the first and third person singular: I wish she was here; Suppose I was rich. This is perfectly acceptable in colloquial English, but in formal writing it is better to stick to were. Remember that the fixed phrase as it were cannot be changed never as it was. See also subjunctive.