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Hello. Could you please tell me which sentence is correct? If
both are correct, what is the difference in meaning?
1- My brother had written short stories for three years before he
published them.
2- My brother had been writing short stories for three years before
he published them.
Thank you.
Reply

Original Post

As for 1, the tense is past perfect. It is supposed that the person wrote short stories for three years in total.  It means the three years when he wrote does not have to be continuous. He might have started writing five years ago. He wrote for two years, and he didn't write for one year.  And again he started writing and he finished. Totally, he wrote for three years and he published.

But in 2, past perfect continuous tense is used. So, the three years must be continuous. We can find that he didn't have a break. He kept writing for three years and finished writing and published them.

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