By Ludima Gus Burton
Love knows no age limits Kay Holland, a fifty year-old widow, doesn't want to be called a cougar. Although fifteen years separate them, thirty-five year old, Drew Lawrence, isn't her cub! She must, however, overcome her own doubts of the age difference, his son and her daughter's opposition and social prejudice to reach her happy ending.
Question from the e-mail: What is subtext? I paid for a critique and received the following advice. "Your subtext often sends the wrong messages." I tried the dictionary, but it didn't help. Can you?
Answer: Subtext is what is implied by what is said, usually in dialogue, but often in narrative as well. And it may reflect what is left unsaid, but hinted at, as well.
In dialogue and narrative both there is always both text and subtext. First there is what is said, and second what is implied sometimes by what is left unsaid. Often, subtext, which the reader picks up on, is as important as what is actually said. Look at the following:
“Oh, is that slide show at the library with the nature photographer tonight?” John grimaced. “I’ll go if you want, but I’m really tired. After all, I was out to the Bible Study at church last night and you stayed home and read. This makes two nights in a row, for me. Of course, I don’t like to mess up your plans....”
Of course he wants to mess up her plans. If he didn’t, he’d say, “You go ahead, hon, I’m too tired tonight. Apparantly he's being nice, but What this Really Says in the Subtext is, “You couldn’t find time to go with me last night, so I’m NOT going to be nice about what you want to do tonight.”