The synopsis part for my NaNo page, but everything I write sounds so lame! lol. I just cannot make this concept sound as cool as it is in my head… I might need to explain it to someone who is not invested and see if they can describe it, because when I try to summarize and be vague I just get all tangled up in run-on sentences and cliches.
Every once in a while I try, but it just feels so strange to be narrating things as they happen. I have read some great novels that are written in the present tense, and I didn’t think twice about it feeling strange or forced. But when I try to do it in my own work it just feels so foreign to me.
To say “I go over to the refrigerator and make myself a sandwich” instead of “I went to the refrigerator to make myself a sandwich.”
I was doing pretty well with it when I was only narrating my first person’s actions but once added more characters to the scene it became complicated, and then I just got stuck back in my comfort zone of using past participle verbs.
“…as soon as the younger children were settled into some games and the older children were comfortable in front of the TV she made some coffee and invited James and Catherine to sit in the kitchen. I’m sure she knew how uncomfortable I was…”
I see now that the last sentence should be more along the lines of “I’m sure she knows/can tell how uncomfortable I am… etc” But I’m still not sure how to rework the contextual sentences that lead into the next action. Or if I even have to?
I think the biggest problem is that conversationally we use the past participle most of the time, no one ever really narrates a situation as it’s happening outside of sports games. But when you use the past tenses you lose that element of discovery and the narrator becomes sort of omniscient. They are providing a retelling of the events so they already know what their reaction will be.
I’m definitely going to keep challenging myself to write in the present tense until I get it! But please feel free to add your input if anyone has any advice or similar problems.