What tense should I write in?!

http://www.novel-writing-help.com

The past tense is by far the most common tense used in novel writing today. Come to think of it, it is used everywhere: in newspapers, in non-fiction books, in magazines, on the news – you name it.

So am I saying you should use it simply because it is the most common tense? Not exactly, no…

Standing apart from the ordinary and the commonplace is a good thing. But the best way to do it in fiction is through original characters and an original story told in a unique way.

Writing a novel in the future conditional tense, say, might be original (or even unique) but only in a very shallow way.

The reason I believe that most of you reading this should use the past tense is simple: it is what readers expect, and what they therefore feel comfortable with.

The past, paradoxically, feels more rooted in the “here and now” than the present tense does.

Why? I’m really not sure, other than the fact that it is the tense us humans have always used to tell stories (and the reason for that, of course, is that a story is something that is over and done with, that is in the past).

 

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s