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  1. Thom Davies

    Thom Davies New Member

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    Past tense into present tense in general sentences

    Discussion in 'Word Mechanics' started by Thom Davies, Oct 27, 2016.

    Hi All

    I hope this is the right place for tense questions...

    I am sticking to the temporal rule of having the narrating character write from the perspective of laying events down at the end of the day. But how strictly do I have to remain in the past tense? Having established I am writing in the past tense is it ok to structure a sentence thus -

    "I clambered up the bank, getting mud on my hands and up the sleeves of my coat."

    So am I over thinking this? "Clambered" is in the past tense but "getting" is in the present. This sentence reads totally ok to me but what these type of sentences often cause me to do is to continue on in the present tense, so then I have to trace back to where it started and rewrite into past tense.

    Thanks

    Thom
     
  2. Elven Candy

    Elven Candy Pay no attention to the foot in my mouth Contributor

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    This is almost exactly the same question that was asked in this thread:
    https://www.writingforums.org/threads/mixing-tenses.148729/

    The short of it is there's no mixing of tenses in your example, but I can't give you the technical on why. I think you'll find the other thread helpful!
     
    Tenderiser, Thom Davies and VynniL like this.
  3. ChickenFreak

    ChickenFreak Contributor Contributor

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    It's not. Your sentence is fine. I think that "getting" is past progressive, but I'm not sure, but in any case, your sentence is fine.
     
    Thom Davies likes this.
  4. Thom Davies

    Thom Davies New Member

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    Thanks both that's really helped me to stop stressing and thanks for the link it explains it in depth.
     

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