"I like having conversations."
Translation:Me gusta tener conversaciones.
since "conversaciones" is plural shouldn't "gustan" be used in lieu of "gusta"?
You have a nice reasoning, but here, the subject is tener (conversaciones) = having (conversations). It's a verb with its object, so we consider it a singular. If the sentence were I like conversations, then the translation would be Me gustan las conversaciones
Compare: "Me gustan conversaciones" and "me gusta tener conversaciones"
If an infinitive phrase or a singular noun follows "gustar," then it will be "me gusta." If a plural noun follows, it will be "me gustan."
A mí me gustan los colores claros.
Me gusta dibujar los elefantes.
Me gusta vender ropa.
No me gustan las publicidades.
Me gusta sentarme junto a la ventana.
Me gustan las ventanas
Not really. With "gustar", the subject follows the verb. Thus, in "No me gustan las publicidades," "las publicidades" is the subject. Plural subject requires plural verb.
In "Me gusta vender ropa.", "vender ropa" (an infinitive phrase) is the subject. [Technically, 'vender ropa" is, in English, a gerund phrase-- but that gets into the complicated topic of "English gerunds" and "gerundios"].
The same way. Spanish does not differentiate between the English gerund and the infinitive.
howcheng: Yes and no. Except, "I like to have conversations" does not involve an English gerund. "To have" is an infinitive, not a gerund.
On the other hand, "I like HAVING conversations" DOES involve an English gerund." In English, an "ing' form of the verb that is used as a noun is a gerund (or it can be part of a "gerund phrase" used as a noun).
Here, in "I like having conversations, the gerund phrase "having conversations" is uses as a noun as a direct object. (In English)
However, you are correct that "I like to have conversations" would translate as "Me gusta tener conversaciones."