As I surfed the web one evening long ago, I swam upon the blog of Janet Reid (Queryshark). OMG! The wealth of helpful tips, IF you take the time to read her archives – I encourage you, DO take the time.
One of the things I learned is to replace the majority of -ing words with -ed words, as they convey a character in action. Simple but effective, and a mammoth job if your book is filled with -ing words!
eg “he is chasing his son” to “he chased his son.”
Over time, I learned to take this rule with a grain of salt. It’s by no means a hard-and-fast rule. A great writer follows the rules and knows when to break the rules. That’s by no means me! But it may be you.
Now, I can’t help read a book and want to change the -ing words to -ed words. Books read tighter. Books are published with -ing words though, so the trick is … tell a good story.