Feb 17, 2010

Random Question

I'm thinking about starting a new book and I'm thinking about writing it in present tense, first person. I've only ever written in past tense. Any tips for writing in present?

13 comments:

Nicole said...

I just wrote a post about this today. I'm beginning to write in first person, present tense and it really puts me in the story; I am the character. It's still sort of a challenge to write that way though...it's like I have to get in character haha. I'm sort of writing and acting at the same time. I definitely have to set a mood before I start writing. Good luck with your story!

InABox said...

This is what I did with my first novel, but I changed to past tense for Novel #2. First person present tense was SO much harder for me.

Make sure you don't tend towards too many "I [verb]" statements and be sure to remember to describe the surroundings and other characters. I tended to focus too much on the character's actions rather than balancing that with the setting.

Happy writing on your next novel!

Melissa said...

I did this for my first MS, and I found it really easy to do, but that's probably because it ended up reading like shite haha it comes more naturally to others, I'm sure :)

Noelle Nolan said...

I find this is comes easier to me as well. I have two WIP's that are in first person. One is basically telling a story that has already happend (past tense) and the other is me telling it as its happening. Or at least thats kinda how its supposed to be. I haven't really gotten far enough into it yet to really know where its going. But I wish you the best of luck.

Jen said...

I don't have any tips, present tense seems to come easier to me than past tense... so I guess in that case I'll be asking for your help when the time comes! Good luck though!

Your Friendly Neighborhood Palindrome said...

I have been recently contemplating using first person/present tense in my new WIP as well. I think it will give the novel the intensity it needs. I just hope I can pull it off.

Good luck with yours!!

Summer said...

My latest YA WIP is first person present tense. I think it lends a sense of urgency and presence that a traditional past-tense can sometimes lack.

It can be hard sometimes to stick to the correct tense, since we're so used to writing in past, but don't worry about it too much, I say. That's what line edits are for.

robby (once upon a book blog/fourteen years) said...

In all the stories I've written, unless the scene I'm writing is a flashback, I write in present tense. For me, it's not any different/harder than past tense. It is sort of strange at first, but if it's right for the story then it will definately work out. Good luck! :]

Dangerous With a Pen said...

Present tense is harder for me, but mostly just because I have to be more cognizant of correct verbs and it sort of interrupts the mental flow as I'm writing.

As far as first/third... I try whatever seems to work (lol, very scientific process). My characters usually correct me pretty quickly if I choose poorly. :)

Best of luck in your new writing adventure!

Stina Lindenblatt said...

I'm used to writing in past tense, but I'm considering writing my current wip in present tense. I'm not sure, though, because apparently it's easy to mess up so it sounds forced. At least according to the comments I've seen on Miss Snark's First Victim Secret Agent contests.

Good luck with the decision!

Sarah said...

Thanks guys. All your comment were very helpful. I only want to try it out more.

J. Kaye said...

Ugh...present tense. Something I fight with all the time.

Amanda said...

I rarely like a book in present tense, though I'm writing one right now that is split into alternating chapters past and present. It's difficult. I wouldn't have tried it before I had enough experience to do it. Don't know that I have any advice really...