The four queens you see in my lock screen there look pretty pleased to have happened upon the lovely Lancelot. He’s just hanging out sleeping innocently in the garden. And what are they doing? Stalking him much? I think so, after all he was the gorgeous rock star of the Arthurian court.
Queenly stalkers aside, right now, in the romance genre first person point of view and, increasingly, present tense are popular ways for authors to write. Just to be different, both my rock romance books are written in third person past tense. Undeniably, there’s something satisfying in the immediacy and the flow of first person present that makes it incredibly fun to dabble in.
In Siren’s Wave I used it for the more poetic mystery-dreamer sequences. I enjoyed writing them so much that in book two I’m using a similar device—present tense third person—for Bran’s mystery stalker’s chapters. Here’s an example … warning Australian spelling coming right up. This one’s called WATCHER.
EYES FIXED ON the movement of his shoulder blades, the girl stands hypnotised. Frozen, watching every ripple of muscle, angle and glide of bone. The perfect curve of his butt in faded jeans. The golden hair falling in messy waves around that face. Those sinful lips.
All of it hers.
All of him, hers. Well not hers quite yet, but very soon.
Not that cow’s that he pampers like she’s some lust-worthy queen to be obeyed and bowed down to. Ava. What a pathetic cobwebbed-spinster-Aunt’s name.
He reaches the front of stage, eyes scanning the swarming crowd, and the drone rises, rushing at her ears.
To distract herself from the wildness, the zapping inside her head, she concentrates on his fingers turning guitar pegs, adjusting and feeling into the sound, like he always does.
Watch him and don’t think of anything else. Especially not her.
“Hey!” he shouts into the mic, long and deep. “Y’all hot enough?” The crowd reaches fever pitch and he turns to grin back at Nate. Bran’s laugh stabs at her chest. An attack she has no desire to protect herself from.
The endless sea of fools all wanting a piece of him, scream. And scream. They lurch and push forward, fingers reaching and mouths gaping like black holes. Wanting to swallow him up.
She knows the feeling.
She stands motionless but for the head she nods in sync with the drum beat.
Up and down.
Down and up.
In a steady pattern, so she won’t look out of place.
And she watches.
Excerpt from Siren’s Wave Book Two.