Friday, April 13, 2012

For the Writers...How I Keep a Consistent Timeline

Please excuse to poor penmanship. When I made it I
never thought I would feature it in a blog post. :)

Today is kind of a special day for me. In a way it is my manuscript’s birthday. I have been working on Jaded since November 2010, but did most of my work in fall and winter of 2011. One of my goals was to make sure my story followed an accurate time line.  

This is an easy mistake to avoid. I don’t want my readers getting distracted with inconsistencies, so the first thing I did was pick a start date for my story and marked it on the calendar. My story started on a Friday and I wanted it to be in the spring, and I picked Friday, April 13. It could have been any Friday but I love the creepiness associated with Friday the 13th. This date never comes up in the story, but I needed to start somewhere.
Starting on the 13th I wrote the number one to represent the first day of the story. Underneath that I wrote Ch 1 and Ch 2 to represent what chapter we are in on that day. On Saturday the 14th has day two, Ch 3. Each time my characters went to sleep, or if the story jumped ahead a week, I would make sure to put the correct chapter on the next day. If two weeks went by I would count two weeks out on the calendar and add the corresponding chapter. 
Another thing I did was mark the phases of the moon. I have a spell that can only be cast on a full moon, and if the start date ever comes up for some reason, after publication, I don’t want a clever reader to send me an email pointing out that the spell never would of worked because it was actually a new moon or some other phase. 
I hope I explained this okay. If you have any questions please ask. Do you have a method that works for you. I'd love to hear it.


  1. What an excellent idea! I am now very curious about your story and looking forward to learning more about it.


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