I am writing a story in first person singular past tense...Is the following usage of 'had been' in the sentence correct.

Canab was a massively multiplayer online game designed and developed by Digital Dreams which was started ten years back. It had been five years that I was working as a game designer.


It is a passive voice but I use it all the time. My editors are fine with it. I use Grammarly and it doesn't like the passive aspect of the words however when I tried to change it to a non-passive the sentences sounded jerky.

Hope that helps.

  • It sure does help. Thanks. – The White Cloud Jun 27 '19 at 18:11
  • Hello, Jonnathan. Can you find a reliable reference allowing the coupling of 'It had been five years that' with 'I was working'? – Edwin Ashworth Jun 27 '19 at 18:37
  • If I was writing the sentence I would word it this way: – Jonnathan Strawthorne Jun 28 '19 at 1:41
  • Canab was a massive multiplayer online game, designed and developed by Digital Dreams, a company started ten years ago. It has been five years since I worked there as a game designer. – Jonnathan Strawthorne Jun 28 '19 at 1:43

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