Think of now as being the immediate present, the moment you are currently in. It’s part of the elusive concept of time, and each now, as it passes, becomes "then" even as it is replaced by a new now.

If someone calls to ask you what you are doing and you reply that you've been waiting tables but you hope to be a movie star and in fact you've saved almost enough bus fare to make it to Hollywood . . . they might interrupt you to explain: "I mean what are you doing right now." In which case you might reply that you're cooking some noodles. If you do something "every now and then," you don't do it all the time but every once in a while.

Definitions of now
  1. adverb
    at the present moment
    “goods now on sale”
    “the now-aging dictator”
    “they are now abroad”
    “it could happen any time now
    synonyms: at present
  2. adverb
    without delay or hesitation; with no time intervening
  3. adverb
    in the immediate past
    “told me just now
  4. adverb
    in the historical present; at this point in the narration of a series of past events
    “President Kennedy now calls in the National Guard”
    “Washington now decides to cross the Delaware”
    “the ship is now listing to port”
  5. adverb
    in these times
    “we now rarely see horse-drawn vehicles on city streets”
    synonyms: nowadays, today
  6. noun
    the momentary present
    Now is a good time to do it”
    “it worked up to right now
    see moresee less
    type of:
    nowadays, present
    the period of time that is happening now; any continuous stretch of time including the moment of speech
  7. adverb
    (prefatory or transitional) indicates a change of subject or activity
    Now the next problem is...”
  8. adverb
    used to preface a command or reproof or request
    now hear this!”
    now pay attention”
Word Family