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What is the difference between "I will have written the letter tomorrow" and "I will write the letter tomorrow"?

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To say I will write the letter tomorrow is a plain statement of intent in which you look forward at the present moment to an act you plan to carry out in the future.

To say I will have written the letter tomorrow is a way of looking back from a future point at an intended action that lies between the present and that future point.

We use this construction particularly for reassurance, whether to ourselves or a third party.

For example, a soldier might reflect: At this time tomorrow I will have completed my tour of duty.

And a builder might reassure an anxious householder: The house repairs will have been completed by tomorrow evening.

So the difference lies not in the future action itself but in the way that the speaker regards it - and the speaker's purpose.

Which construction you would prefer really depends on the context.

  • You may want to note that if the person writes the letter today, then "I will have written the letter tomorrow" is still a true statement, but "I will write the letter tomorrow" is false. – Tashus Dec 20 '18 at 17:16

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