Present Continuous: “Near now” or “around now” concept

Time axis 1. Pay attention to the green circle that says “near now.”

We can understand near now or around now as a period of time starting at an uncertain time in the past and finishing at an undefined time in the future.

A good thing to know is that a near-now period of time can be an opposition to constantly happening activity. It can be just temporary activity without comparing it to constant activity.


He writes stories. (constant activity)

He is writes stories (constant activity), but now he is writing poems (near-now activity, temporary activity as compared to constant activity).

We can go deeper and add one more example. Pay attention to 3 different concepts:

constant activity

near-now activity

moment of speech activity

He is writes stories, but now he is writing poems, and at this very moment he is eating at the restaurant

Other ways to explain near-now activity is:

New patterns or habits

actions that are diffident or new compared to similar actions in the past

Nowadays people are using phones to read newspapers

Temporary actions

Now he is working on a new project that will help him save the world!

In the middle of doing something

I am learning English, because I want to visit America

With: this week, this year, today, this month, this semester etc

The restaurant is serving only vegetarian food this week

Back to: Present Continuous

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