Present Tense vs. Past Tense: The Great Verb Debate

Jane Kolven

A blog post in which I find myself defending a trend I didn’t think I liked

After I finished reading Natalie Cox’s Mutts and Mistletoe, which I picked up on a lark at a big box store as a treat for myself while grocery shopping, I started contemplating what drew me into the book (spoiler: the mutts) and what had me initially hesitant about the book. Since I came to the book with no prior knowledge, my experience of opening to the first page was one of real discovery. And there it was on the third page, glaring at me, mocking me for trusting that first page, daring me to abandon the book after two seconds of reading: a verb in present tense.

Page one of Mutts and Mistletoe begins with the narrator telling us something she’s already done, luring readers like me into believing it’s a past tense…

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