Sneak Peak. Doing rewrites of the next book in the Dear Teddy series and for some reason this one seems to be coming out in a different tense. Not that it is a bad thing, but clearly I don’t want to mess with something so much that it loses its readability.
I’m posting this here mainly for opinions of anyone who has read Dear Teddy already. If the change is bothersome. It’s a little triggering and a little graphic at the end, so please as always read with caution.
Thank you for your time.
I love my Mr. Ted. He is all mine and he is magic. He keeps me safe from the bad man. I hug him all tight. We sit on the floor by the fire. I don’t be allowed to sit on the chairs. I am too evil.
Me and Mr. Ted like to write stories. He tells me what to write. Then I draw the pictures about it and we make it all nice. I put it in my scrap book. My Nan bought me the scrap book. It is big and has lots of pages. It has a car on the front and my name.
I write about all my stories inside it. I don’t write about the bad man though. I don’t tell anyone about the bad man. He can hear me. He reads minds. Mr. Ted keeps him away.
My mum says she doesn’t want to hear about it. But the bad man makes me scared in my tummy. Mr. Ted says don’t tell anyone. If I do then the bad man will come and get me. My mum says he’s a demon. He is from the devil like me. But I’m not a demon. I’m just evil. But my mum is going to make me all better. She gives me medicine.
The medicine doesn’t get to work yet. That’s why the bad man comes at night. Then he does the hurt thing. It makes me scared. Mr. Ted says it’s a secret. The bad man bites me and scratches me. Then I don’t get away. My mum doesn’t hear me shout. The bad man makes me go to sleep.
Me and Mr. Ted write a story about a penguin and a mouse. I make all the pictures. They live together in the mouse house. They are very happy. They go to the fair and have candy floss. The mouse is very kind. He shares all his things with the penguin. He shares his candy floss. The penguin thinks it is very yummy.
Me and my Nan are going to the fair. It is my birthday and I get to be six. My mum and dad don’t come. They have lots of things to do at home.
I get candy floss. But I don’t get to give Mr. Ted any of it. My Nan says it will make his fur all sticky. Then my mum will be mad and he will have to go in the rubbish bin. He is my Mr. Ted. I didn’t want him to go away in the rubbish bin.
No candy floss for Mr. Ted. I tell him no. He doesn’t be sad about it. He is a good Mr. Ted.
I am allowed to go on the rides. They make it all tickle inside. My Nan goes on them too. She likes the rides. I hold onto my Nan’s hand. We get on rides that are like tea cups. We sit in the cup and it spins around in circles. It makes me all dizzy in my head. My Nan says I am being silly because it makes my tongue fall out of my mouth and my eyes go across.
There are big rides too. They go very fast and I want to go on them. I ask my Nan but she says I am too small.
I am big.
I am six.
My Nan says, “Not big enough.”
I pull a sulky face and make my arms fold up. But she says I was still too small. One day I will be big. Then I will go on them. There is a board with a line on it. I get to stand on my tip toes. My Nan says I am cheating.
We finish on all the rides and we get to ride on a tram. It is time to go home again. My Nan takes me to my house. My mum and dad are there. They don’t remember it is my birthday. But I am allowed them anyway until I don’t be evil anymore. My mum says when I am better I can have one like my brother does. I try my best to get better. I take all my medicine.
I sit by the fire with Mr. Ted after my Nan goes home. We draw a picture about the candy floss and the tea cup rides. My mum is in the kitchen. She is cooking dinner. It is roast chicken. My dad sits at the table and drinks his beer in the can. He asks me what I am doing. I tell him I am drawing a picture about the fair.
“Can I look at it?”
I show him my book. He gets the pictures in his big hands. He asks me if I drew them myself. I make my head all nod. Yes I did. They are mine.
My dad does the stare thing. “It’s bad to tell lies.”
But I don’t be lying. I did them myself. I didn’t trace them. Me and Mr. Ted made them. I get my paper and my pencil. I show my dad how to draw the rides and the penguin. He picks it up. He says it is very good.
My dad asks if he can look at my story. I show him the one about the fair. My dad sits on the floor with me and then he looks at my book. He reads it out loud. He makes a silly voices with it. It makes me laugh. He makes the voices sound all funny.
He gets my hand. He puts it inside his pants. I wish I got to hug Mr. Ted. My dad gets to the end of the page. He tells me to turn it to the next one. He says my stories were very good. He wants to read some more. He keeps my hand in his pants until it get all wet. He tells me to go and wash my hands. It is nearly dinner time.
I love it in present tense. It gives me a better sense of sitting with the boy as he is telling me about his life. He’s sharing his everyday good things as well as the everyday bad things and it feels like he is talking right to me. Well done 🙂
This is scary on so many levels it’s unreal. I have five children and this makes me cringe. WRITE ON!
I like it very much, it is written very well. It will relate to small children, that may be scared to talk to any one for help. They may just start writing too. It seems that you are trying to put distance between your emotions and your father. Where in “Dear Teddy” you were going through the shame, and asking why he would do that. In shock that he would make you do it. I hope this helps. You can tell me shut up old woman.
Yes and thank you for reading Billie.
I just noticed Elizabeth saying she likes it better in present tense and I honestly didn’t even notice it, that’s how natural it felt. I usually always pick up on present tense right away, too, so that’s a damn good job. As usual this opening has plenty going on, very informative right off, very naturally delivered, pov is perfect, the flow is happening, this is going to be great when it’s done, can’t wait.