Friday, October 19, 2012

Grammar Corner: Past Tenses Aplenty

The English Language is a fierce and complex thing, not just in the words, but in the grammar as well.  As writers, the English Language, is our most valuable asset (that and imagination and life experience), and there are many aspects of it that we take for granted.  Taking it for granted is not a bad thing at all - we converse, we read, we write, and through all of this we learn what sounds organic and makes syntactical sense without having to know anything of formal grammar.  Something that usually comes to us quite naturally is the usage of past tense in writing.  Did you know that there are nine different forms of past tense?  I didn't.  I only looked it up because the book I'm currently reading, How Not to Write a Novel by Howard Mittelmark and Sandra Newman, mentioned that there were six.  I won't go into all nine forms here since most of us handle 'had, would have, had been, etc' with ease, but if you are curious about the specifics please visit Daily Writing Tips.  It is not necessary to know what a gerund, participle, or appositive phrase is in order to be a magnificent writer; however, it never hurts to be knowledgeable of one's craft even to the point of being able to say, 'that there's a perfect example of past habitual!'

Amanda LaFantasie (Skoora) © 2012

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