Past Tense Vs Present Tense

When I first started writing, my opinion was that the tense didn’t matter. My entire focus was to get the story out, get the story told exactly the way I needed. And the only way for me to do that was to write in present tense. Even now after writing for almost two years, I write in present tense. The only way to explain it is that in my mind, the story is happening in this very moment. The feelings as purely written as I feel in that moment.

So when the discussion of tense change came about, I sided with present tense. I was already writing that way and it seemed to be my personal preference. I didn’t understand the difficulty of reading present tense versus past tense after reading my own stories so many times. And to be clear, I’m not putting down anyone who prefers to read or write either tense.

I’m in the process of getting Glimmer of Hope edited. And one of the first things that my editor stated was that it would be easier for readers if it were written in past tense. While I’ve been possibly stubborn on sticking to my present tense side of the fence, my only purpose is to get my story out there. Isn’t that what really matters?

And as if to put this into perspective, the next book I purchased on Amazon was written in present tense. While I am in total agreement of going through situations with the characters, loving every minute of it might I add, that I had to make an adjustment to get into the writing style. It wasn’t a hard adjustment but I still had to make one and I’m open to the present tense. I could only imagine someone not interested in present tense, taking one look and then putting it down.

While the preference of tense still seems to be in debate, the real question still remains. However it isn’t the question that most would think it is. Some people don’t like westerns or science fiction but that doesn’t mean writers should stop writing it. It is all about reader preference. What are you willing to risk to get your story out there? Are you willing to risk losing readers because of your writing preference?

And only you can answer that.

Advertisements

With no evidence your new defense is useless
You can find your way around it, the obvious truth
Back when inebriant and ignorant and cruel
I was spinning all around just waiting here for you

To find your way in
Hoping you find your way in

‘Cause I’m wide awake
You are now the only thing that’s keeping me
Wide awake
Yeah I’m wide awake
Fear is now the only thing that’s keeping me
Wide awake

Wide Awake by 32 Leaves

Breeze Series & Destiny Series

With no evidenc…

Mind Games & Tricks

I need two extra heads and four extra sets of arms. Within the last two weeks, I’ve become swamped with work and unable to write or read like I’d love to do. I think my brain finds it hilarious, sitting back in a lounge chair, sending cute little creative ideas to frustrate me further. Two book ideas I have scribbled down to write months ago seemed to seep out from the cracks, plaguing me with ideas, names, places, situations, conversation that I literally couldn’t put down on paper.  It was just mean.

I recently finished my first YA novel, Breeze Series. I’m so pleased with how it turned out, everything that I told myself it would be, it has become. And I can’t stop thinking about jumping into the sequel but I have no time to divulge the way I want. So lunch time and breaks are devoted to quick notes, ideas on loose leaf paper to be stuffed into my purse.

And worse, another fantastic YA idea came along. I have yet to read a story or even hear of a story like the one in my mind which excites me. The scary/worse part is who knows when I’ll be able to pull it out. I have so many stories to be written between adult romantic thriller series, adult stand alone, adult paranormal series, and YA paranormal series. It’s almost insane to add another to the list but I know it’s a story that needs to be told.

Other than having a purse filled with tons of pieces of loose leaf paper with ideas jotted down on it, anyone have ideas on how to best get everything out? It feels like the harder I try to stay focused on work that needs to be done, the more my brain chuckles sending out ‘movie scenes’ that are wonderful. Does this issue plague anyone else? Any advice on this would help as  I’m driving myself crazy. (Had to switch to a smaller purse…no big notebook will fit anymore and it feels odd writing on my breaks…like I’m James Bond trying to quickly get the message understood before it blows up in my face. )

A Writing Exercise

Not too long ago, I was having trouble trying to write and a dear friend assisted in getting me past the writing issue. I say issue because I could easily see the scene, hear the words but my fingers couldn’t write out what I wanted. Maybe out of fear? Frustration? It just refused to make itself known.

And I’m sure someone is screaming, ‘It’s still writers block!’ but Oh well. My writers block usually consists of nothing, no sight, no scene, no sense of direction and lack of interest in continuing to write that particular story temporarily.

My friend told me to take out a piece of paper and pen. Turn off everything so that I would be focused. I was given a short time limit and three words. I was to continue from that and decide after whether it was worth saving. I have decided after the fact that no it’s not worth saving. However I felt the urge to share it. My friend encouraged the share with only a few mini complaints (a few word choices and a slight stumble), which I totally agree but it was TIMED! It won’t be awesome the first time through.

It’s not the greatest and once again, it’s just a writing exercise that I used and encourage others to try just to get the creativity flowing again. Feel free to let me know what you think.

“I should have…”
I should have listened harder to the words he was saying instead of ignoring him. Most of the time, his words were endless ramblings about the news or politics. It seemed to effect him more and more, the more passionate he became the further I tuned him out. How was I supposed to know that their was mixed meaning implied?
Complaints of how dangerous the neighborhood was getting crawled at the bottom of the screen. He stated several times that moving away would be a blessing but I took it for the inner calling he has to travel. A vacation right now would break our budget. And it’s not like I’d get time off of work.
I should have paid attention to the signs that were flashing instead of blowing them off. The truth was obvious but my heart wasn’t in it. And it must have showed. Late nights working and mood changes were routine from my end. It never mattered before.
I should have let him go ahead with his plans. Not tearing down his ideas or belittling his manhood. He never rebutted which always left a surge of power roiling through my veins. And yet here I lay in a pool of my own DNA. Staring at the man that finally lost his cool.
I should have loved him. Maybe my end would have been different.

1 to 3 and back to 1

With support from friends and family, my YA novel has made some series headway. I was told to write at least one chapter a week which assisted in getting to chapter ten easily. However, something changed- the best explanation being that my water was messed with. I was able to write a chapter a day for three days in a row and made it all the way to chapter fourteen.

It was a shock to me especially since it’s about 10-12 pages a chapter. I wasn’t just skimming through so I couldn’t explain the rush of creativity but nonetheless grateful for it. However it has slowed back down where I’m struggling to finish chapter fourteen and move on to fifteen.Instead of being more annoyed and frustrated than usual, I’m grateful.

I’m ahead of the schedule I made for myself with only four chapters until it’s completed. Then the editing begins but this is a time to be happy, glad that everything worked out and not chastising myself for not continuing the insane writing session. Someone really must have messed with my water. I’m almost positive that I’m not the only person dealing with spurts of creativity but it was very sudden.

Has anyone else had this happen to them before? Are you not struggling to get back in the flow of a slower pace?

Revise & Revisit

I have been editing, reediting, and re-reediting my first full length novel, Glimmer of Hope. There seems to be something in the water that is giving goosebumps that this will soon see the light of day sooner rather than later.

With the assistance and support of my BFFLs, friends and family, I have been re-motivated to get moving. One of the best things about working on this piece is that I haven’t really sat down and read it in about a month. It felt fresh and easily mold-able to what I wanted. I didn’t hesitate to chop off too much description, too much conversation and make the points clear.

The fun part about writing a romantic thriller is no matter how obvious the end, it will always sneak up on the reader. Or at least I hope it does. Planning to keep revising this novel until I’m confident that the final piece is complete. Then hand it back to an editor, who hopefully doesn’t have much to do.

There is a light at the end of the tunnel. I was certain that light was much farther away than it actually is. Tomorrow is another day, taking the needed few more steps before I’ve arrived. 🙂

Creative Disconnection

I have been writing my chapter ten for the YA Breeze Series with not much issue until last night. I literally wrote everything I needed, a perfect cliff hanger ready to be set…when nothing happened. It wasn’t even like I blanked it, the scene was still floating in front of my eyes. I could hear the words that needed to be said and all the ground work has been laid out perfectly for the cliff hanger. So please explain to me why everything in my mind wouldn’t come out on paper.

Three separate ending attempts were made before I turned it all off and went to bed. This morning, I knew I was going to work on chapter eleven because chapter ten was pretty much complete. I reread the last few pages to get in the groove, tone, and character of getting the ending completed when once again, nothing would come out correctly.

Expressing my current mood/thoughts: anger, frustration, irritation, annoyance, and creative disconnection. With outline in hand, checking off each completed task has been a huge help but to this end my mind has gone into overload with colors, voices, expressions, emotions that my fingers simply can’t get right onto paper.

So I made a huge star and comments on the outline to go back, fix/work on it. However the ending that is sitting in it’s place is awful…I mean the kind of awful where a string of curses fly through my mind as I reread it and I’m mentally trying to punch it in the face. Yeah…that’s exactly where I am right now.

Attempting to move on to chapter eleven, forgetting the scene behind me but it’s difficult. The background music is no longer a help but a hindrance, TV will only distract me into being unproductive  and my brain is screaming at the top of it’s lungs ‘Get It Together!’.

At least I can be grateful that the creative juices are flowing. I just need a proper cup to fill up with.