Continuing in our series of common mistakes I see when critiquing, here's one I see a lot. Writers get told not to use passive voice, and for many, that means avoiding the words 'was' or 'had'. But sometimes, the sentence or phrase just doesn't work unless you use that form.
Don't be afraid to use 'was' or 'had' when it's needed. It doesn't always signify passive voice, and even when it does, a little passive voice here and there isn't going to make your story unpublishable. Writing weird sounding sentences to avoid using 'was' will.
Oh, and just because you write present tense, it doesn't mean you can't still fall into the passive voice trap.
To get rid of the passive voice, change it to:
Does this make sense?