SOURCE   (Fan fiction)

I was reading a novel and saw this sentence:

"If you did not question that, I wouldn't have picked you."

Why isn't it "If you had not questioned that, I wouldn't have picked you."
What's the difference ?

  • 1
    Please share the source, the interpretation may differ from author to author. Some authors have different grammatical styles and usages.
    – Varun Nair
    Jul 12, 2017 at 5:05
  • 1
    There is no difference in meaning. This is "fan fiction". You should expect somewhat "unusual" application of the grammatical principles of tense, number, etc. Anyway, it's fiction and creative writing, which is not bound by any "rules" or even expectations. Jul 12, 2017 at 5:10

1 Answer 1


It is explained here

Some Americans use the simple past in the if clause of a past unreal conditional. For example, there's an old song called, "If I knew you were coming, I'd have baked a cake." In formal speech or writing the correct form is, "If I had known you were coming, I would have baked a cake." There is often a difference between how grammar is taught and how ordinary people use it in conversation.

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .