I am busy editing my next novel ‘Raddy and Syl’; it is the third in a series, and the first novel, ‘Radwinter’, which I had just intended to be a stand alone story was written almost in the form of a diary, so there was a real mix of the present and past tense. The main character Thomas explores his feeling and his relationships (present tense) but also relates what has happened to him during the day (past) and writes down his research into his family history (present and past!)
In the second novel, Magick, which i thought as I was writing it would be the sequel to complete Thomas;s story, was also written in a mixture of present and past as he continues to think about himself and his relationship with his new partner and his thoughts on becoming a father to her son, but also recounts his adventures as he looks for a missing woman and researches the maternal side of his family.
Much to my surprise, Thomas’s story is continuing in what is now the third and presumably last part of the story (but who can tell, i can’t!) I am at the stage where the story is now finished and I am editing it, and one of the things I am having to be most careful about is the tense it is written in because again there are several different things going on, Thomas’s present as a new husband and expectant father, another mystery of another missing woman and an old lady who has a relationship with a Moroccan which worries her family.
It is very fashionable now, it seems to write novels all in the present tense and I really don’t like it, it puts a barrier between me and the narrative somehow… and yet some of my novel is in the present tense… and I am having to be so careful to make sure there is a consistent use of tense within each scene and part… checking, checking, checking and checking again! I have no doubt though, there will be some mistakes which eagle-eyed readers will point out to me!