Clipped Wings (chap. 21-26) with Q and A + Video’s

 

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This week’s discussion of Clipped Wings by Helena Hunting covers chapters 21-26. There is SO much that happens in these chapters!!!

Hayden and Tenley both express fear that the big reveals they’re still hiding will change how the other views them. At this point do you think those fears are valid? Discuss…

Tamie: I think the fear is valid for them because neither of them is really sure of what the relationship means to the other at this point. It’s more than physical for both of them but they haven’t expressed it really out loud. I think the actions of both speak pretty clearly in this regard, but I understand why they still aren’t able to articulate it yet. We have the advantage of being in both of their heads tho. I also think the last parts of their secrets feed the fear. Hayden is worried about the whole Sienna conversation, and Tenley still has to reveal Connor.

Elena: I agree, Tamie, and yes, I think these fears are pretty valid. They both are not ready to reveal everything of their pasts, because they don’t know how the other person would react. Sometimes this happens even when people know each other for ages. So it doesn’t surprise me. Fearing what the other might think of you is human and I believe all of us have experienced the same fear at some point of our lives. Furthermore, Hayden and Tenley’s relationship is still new on so many ways, so it’s understandable that they both are afraid of what this relationship could transform into, if those secrets were revealed…
Partially as a diversion Hayden takes Tenley out on a real date so to speak which is very different for him. What did you think while reading Hayden’s thoughts on this?

Elena: I loved their date and everything that came with it. I think it was about time 😉

Tamie: It’s a fairly typical and normal progression for most people, but since it’s out of the norm for Hayden I was really glad to see it. I think it’s overdue that they step out of their bubble.

In chapter 22 Hayden says “I don’t know if the pain ever really goes away. I think you just learn how to deal with it.” What do you think of Hayden’s statement? Do you think it’s a pessimistic or a realistic kind of approach?

Elena: I tend to think along Hayden’s lines on this. I believe we’ll always carry the scars of pain, but there are ways through which we can deal with them. The important thing is that we learn how to deal and not let pain swallow us.

Tamie: Perfectly said Elena! Emotional pain can take a lot longer to heal than physical pain does, and it can color our world and how we react to it for our entire lives. I completely agree with Hayden’s statement.

In chapter 24 there’s a confrontation between Hayden and Officer Cross. What were your thoughts on how both men reacted?

Tamie: Whoa! Clearly I’m on Hayden’s side. Officer Cross is unprofessional at best, pushing Hayden’s buttons and making the kinds of statements he does is actually pretty sickening. While I understand why this man represents failure and all kinds of bad feelings for Hayden I was definitely shushing him as I was reading. Antagonizing a cop is probably not in his best interests and I hope it doesn’t come back to bite him in the ass.

Elena: I didn’t like Cross’s statements at all. Like Tamie said, it was highly unprofessional of him. He shouldn’t judge Hayden just because of his appearance and his childhood. This was immature of Officer Cross.  People have many layers, and I believe it’s not right to judge a person when you don’t know them or know very little of them.

After Officer Cross finally leaves, Hayden needs Tenley in a very NOW kind of physical way and she wants to be what he needs. Thoughts?

Tamie: What I liked beyond the hot sex scene we got was that Tenley understood exactly what Hayden needed and why. He needed the intimate physical connection for his emotional turmoil. She gets that because she’s experienced the same thing but for different reasons. Now…getting back to the sex itself. Holy crap!!! I admit it…I loved the whole possessiveness attitude from Hayden. “Tell me,” Hayden demanded, but it sounded like a plea. “tell me I’m the only one.”  YOWZA! YES, YES…you’re the only one Hayden! O…sorry…got a bit caught up in the moment 😉

Elena: I loved the scene and especially because both Hayden and Tenley wanted to connect that way.

In chapter 25 Trey calls Tenley and he threatens her even more violently. When Hayden asks Tenley about who was on the phone, she lies to him. What do you think of her not telling Hayden?

Elena: I think she should have told him, especially now that Hayden has repeatedly asked her not to hide things from him. In the previous discussions I said that I understood Tenley not wanting to say things to Hayden, and that pushing a person brings only damage, but this time it’s different. This is serious business, and Trey isn’t joking. Hayden needs to know what’s happening, because Trey’s actions could compromise everything.

Tamie: O boy! The time to tell Hayden about the rest of the secret has come because she can’t talk about Trey without revealing the rest of it. This isn’t something she should have to be dealing with alone, but she’s made it that way because she’s being ruled by her fear of losing Hayden. It’s an awful situation to be in and I feel so badly for her.

Favorite Quote(s):

Tamie:

“Oh, right. Because pussy-flavored icing is only really appealing to me.”

“I told him you were mine.”

Elena:

“I told him you were mine.”

“Tell me I’m the only one.”

Favorite scene: 

Elena: The date.

Tamie:

The date

The end of chapter 24 and the beginning of chapter 25

Bonus points for Hayden for not caving sooner than he did after the first tattoo session 😉

Here is this week’s q and a with Helena:

 If you could pick a theme song each and together (so three songs total) for Hayden and Tenley what would the songs be? 

 

Tenley’s theme song would be The Lonelby Christina Perri. The tone of the song and the lyrics are perfect for her. It’s an emotionally charged song, and very fitting for where Tenley is when we meet her in Clipped Wings.

 

Hayden is a little more difficult to pin down with one song, but Afraid by The Neighbourhood is a pretty good indicator of how Hayden’s exterior doesn’t really match who he is inside, and how his relationship with Tenley transcends far beyond anything he ever anticipated. 

 

For the two of them, I’d choose eitherUndisclosed Desires by Muse or Demons by Imagine DragonDemons is about wanting something good to overshadow the bad inside, and the perception that what the person is hiding is reason enough for them to let the other goWe all have demons; pieces of ourselves or our pasts that weigh us down, and Tenley and Hayden’s are so heavy and difficult to share. 

 

 

Undisclosed Desires has a similar message, but there’s a focus on what’s under the mask, and really getting to the person under the facade. I think that’s a fairly accurate representation of Tenley and Hayden’s relationship.

 

Besides Tenley and Hayden, which was the character you enjoyed writing the most and why? 

 I loved writing them all for a variety of reasons, even Trey surprisingly, enough. Villains, who are problematic for the hero and heroine in the story, are quite fun to develop, even though their purpose is to create dissension. 

 However, if I had to pick one of the supporting cast, it would definitely be Chris. He’s genuinely a good guy, even though he doesn’t always do or say the right thing. His past, while not as damaging as Hayden’s, is still unpleasant. But he’s loyal to his friends and the people he cares about, and he tries to make good decisions. He’s at a disadvantage, though, because he hasn’t had much in the way of support or direction; not from the people who should have provided it. Like Hayden, his Inked Armor crew are very much his family and he holds them in the highest regard.

 

Have you ever cried while writing a scene? If so can you share about it? 

 I sure have. Some of the scenes were hard to write not because I couldn’t get the words down, but because of what was going on internally for the characters. The scene where Tenley finally tells Sarah about the crash was one instance. Tenley’s breakdown after the first tattoo session was another. Although those weren’t the only ones, they definitely stand out in my mind.

 I’m an emotional person; it’s how I’m wired. When I was writing those scenes I needed to be in the character’s head, which isn’t always pleasant. Anyone who’s experienced even a fraction of the trauma Hayden and Tenley have will understand how much guilt and fear clouds their judgement and perception of events and situations.

 In those specific scenes, Tenley and Hayden are emotionally vulnerable and stagnated by a past they can’t move forward from. It throws them into emotional chaos, and I find it impossible not to internalize the intensity of those feelings. 

Thanks Helena. The q and a’s with you have really been a highlight for us!! ❤

If you’d like to ask Helena a question for next week which will also be the last week of discussions you can leave it in the comments. Thanks!

Tamie and Elena

 

3 thoughts on “Clipped Wings (chap. 21-26) with Q and A + Video’s

  1. Mary Jo Toth says:

    Hayden and Tenley both express fear that the big reveals they’re still hiding will change how the other views them. At this point do you think those fears are valid? Discuss…
    I think this is human nature to doubt/fear how others perceive you. I’m frustrated that they aren’t being completely open and honest with each other but I get it. To me, what they are feeling for each other is something new and different which has they both questioning how they feel and how they deal with their pasts. Neither one wants to lose this new relationship/feeling that they have started. I love how there is almost a wonderment from each of the about how they feel toward each other.

    Partially as a diversion Hayden takes Tenley out on a real date so to speak which is very different for him. What did you think while reading Hayden’s thoughts on this?
    I enjoyed their date. I loved that Hayden took Tenley to a place he went with his Mom and opened up about his past to her through art. The painting descriptions were pretty hilarious too!

    In chapter 22 Hayden says “I don’t know if the pain ever really goes away. I think you just learn how to deal with it.” What do you think of Hayden’s statement? Do you think it’s a pessimistic or a realistic kind of approach?
    I don’t think I can say this better than Elena. I’m a realist so to me it’s just a fact of life that we will experience pain and how we cope is determined by our own approach to life. I felt this was honest, he didn’t sugar coat the fact that Tenley will always carry some level of pain from her trauma.

    In chapter 24 there’s a confrontation between Hayden and Officer Cross. What were your thoughts on how both men reacted?
    Officer Cross made my skin crawl which I believe I had the same reaction when he pulled Tenley over. I was nervous for Hayden, I didn’t want him to provoke a police officer but at the same time understood his frustration. Officer Cross needs to crawl back under his rock – there is a man that seems to let the badge go to his head and not in a good way!

    After Officer Cross finally leaves, Hayden needs Tenley in a very NOW kind of physical way and she wants to be what he needs. Thoughts?
    Perfect Tamie! This was intense and off the charts … loved every minute and really liked how Tenley understood what Hayden needed based on her own needs. It was sweet how Hayden was afraid to be too aggressive.

    In chapter 25 Trey calls Tenley and he threatens her even more violently. When Hayden asks Tenley about who was on the phone, she lies to him. What do you think of her not telling Hayden?
    AUGH! I know she is afraid to tell the whole story but this was a great opportunity to open up and lean on Hayden for support. Trey makes me nervous. This would also be a good way to get Hayden to open up about Sienna. I am dreading what happens when the lies get revealed … on pins and needles to read the final chapters.

    Q for Helena: Where do you like to write?

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  2. Fears about big reveals: I don’t think that their fears are valid, because they both seem like really sympathetic people, but of course we have a privileged viewpoint, so I do agree that their fears are understandable.

    Hayden’s statement re. pain: I agree entirely with Hayden and with Elena. It’s realistic to assume there will always be pain. Even if it dulls with time, that in itself can be painful, because then you feel guilty about not feeling as bad as you think you should.

    Officer Cross: I did not like this guy at all. You’re right, Mary Jo — totally skin-crawly! Just the fact that he doesn’t seem to feel bad about his mistakes and realize how they may have had serious repercussions for Hayden — that alone makes him a horrible person, but then he’s creepy on top of that.

    After Cross leaves: Ha! Love Tamie’s response. This scene worried me at first because I thought, here they go again, avoiding communication by having sex, but some truths managed to come out in the process and it was super hot, so I was happy.

    Trey: I sooo wanted her to tell Hayden, but it was the wrong time and it would involve telling him everything, so I knew she couldn’t. After his behaviour with Cross (not that she saw all of it, but she got a pretty good idea of how it went down), I’d be hesitant to tell him anything that would set off his protective instinct. He needs some downtime first so he doesn’t react without thinking it through. But, yeah, time to tell all, Tenley. So looking forward to the final chapters!

    Favourite Quote:

    “Little Miss Naughty, is it? You’ve been pushing all week. You’re about to find out what happens when I reach my limit. Trust me when I tell you, you’ll need me to drive you in.” (Wow. That quote REALLY needs context.)

    Favourite Scene:
    After Cross leaves. Of course. And, the scene between Cross and Hayden was intense, which I love.

    FYI, great songs!

    Question for Helena: You say you really feel the characters’ emotions when you’re writing traumatic scenes, but do you find it hard to translate that into words, to get the range of emotions they go through in a scene across effectively? I think that must be one of the hardest parts of writing: getting readers to experience everything you can imagine your characters going through emotionally. Also, thanks so much for answering all our questions! I hope to say hi this week at RT.

    Lila

    Like

  3. Steph W. says:

    Wonderful wonderful song choices. Very fitting, especially Tenley’s song. It’s very haunting. I had Goosebumps when I was listening to the song.

    1. Hayden and Tenley both express fear that the big reveals they’re still hiding will change how the other views them. At this point do you think those fears are valid? Discuss…

    I agree with Tamie and Elena. I think fear is definitely valid at this early stage of their relationship. Both Hayden and Tenley’s truths and backstories are very emotional and complex. There are so many layers and feelings that go into it that I think it is reasonable to experience fear when they think about disclosing them.

    2. Partially as a diversion Hayden takes Tenley out on a real date so to speak which is very different for him. What did you think while reading Hayden’s thoughts on this?

    The date is PERFECT. I absolutely LOVE IT. When can I go out with Hayden? Please call to let him know I want a date with him 😛

    3. In chapter 22 Hayden says “I don’t know if the pain ever really goes away. I think you just learn how to deal with it.” What do you think of Hayden’s statement? Do you think it’s a pessimistic or a realistic kind of approach?

    While I have never experience tremendous loss, I think Hayden’s statement is a realistic approach in dealing with pain. We all carry pain differently. Hayden and Tenley definitely demonstrate that. In a sense, we learn to control pain instead of letting it control us.

    4. In chapter 24 there’s a confrontation between Hayden and Officer Cross. What were your thoughts on how both men reacted?

    GAH, don’t let me started on Officer Cross, so I’m gonna be super bias here. I think he is super shallow, judgmental, immature, and CREEPY!!! Basically, UNPROFESSIONAL. Somebody please remove him from the premise, please! This just means I’m on Hayden’s side.

    5. After Officer Cross finally leaves, Hayden needs Tenley in a very NOW kind of physical way and she wants to be what he needs. Thoughts?

    *Blushing& busily fanning myself* Oh that was HOT!! LOVE IT.
    Beyond the physical attractions they feel for the other person, Tenley and Hayden have a powerful emotional connection. I think their pasts make them the most unique couple together. They NEED each other because they UNDERSTAND (more than us) what each other has been through. I think that’s why the sex scenes are extremely powerful and intimate.

    6. In chapter 25 Trey calls Tenley and he threatens her even more violently. When Hayden asks Tenley about who was on the phone, she lies to him. What do you think of her not telling Hayden?

    I really think Tenley should have told Hayden. I think given how hostile Trey is I think Tenley should not be dealing with him alone but asking Hayden would mean revealing everything. But I really think it’s time to tell Hayden everything or else it could really compromise their relationship. I honestly feel bad for Tenley because it is difficult to discuss her accident and who Connor is. Her non-disclosure stems from her fear of a negative reaction from Hayden. Her fear is definitely controlling her actions.

    Q: (not sure if it has been asked) What was the HARDEST part about writing Clipped Wings?

    Like

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