For those of you not already familiar with Wendy's Story Timeline, let me explain (everyone else can skip this part!) A while ago, I was writing a short story set in the present day with flashbacks to WW1. In the story, it was important to know in what year a character might feasibly have married, had a baby, become a grandmother etc. I got into such a muddle (I tried to marry off my lead character when she would have been only eight!) so decided to draw myself a time line to work from. This was time consuming, scrappy and only usable for one story.
When I looked online, I could find timelines but nothing specific to my needs.
These were the things I wanted:
- My character's age to be automatically calculated against each year on the timeline..
- A column to show major events logged against each year
- A column where I could record events in my character's life
- A timeline that could cover any century
- A timeline that could be filled in for my story, saved and a new one started for the next
This was when I turned in desperation to my husband - who kindly dedicated an evening to creating the perfect timeline for writers.
To go to Wendy's Story Timeline Click here. It should be straightforward to use - after all it was made for me and I'm pretty useless at technology! I have filled in kings and queens and some major events but you can fill in events of your choice.
So what's new? Whilst using the timeline for one of my stories, I knew that I wanted my character to be age 18 at the beginning of WW1 (1914) but unless I used my fingers (I'm not too good at mental arithmetic) I had no idea in which year she would have been born in order to place her on my time line. 'I'll sort it,' said my husband and he set aside a Sunday to solve the problem for me (and you).
The new timeline now has an Date of Birth Calculator. See below for how to use it.
Once you have your character's date of birth, just add it to the timeline and - hey presto - you now have all the information you need.
What else is new? Well, this isn't a new feature, you just might not have realised you could use Wendy's Timeline for this purpose. Instead of putting in your character's date of birth, you can put in a life event such as marriage or date of ascension to the throne. The timeline will then calculate the number of years married or on the throne. This is a good way of finding out anniversary dates for your characters. See below for an example.
If Wendy's Story Timeline is new to you, below are simple instructions for how to use it.
If you have any problems or questions about using this timeline, please let me know and I will try and help. It is free to download, but could I just ask that if you do, please leave a comment and if you share on your blog please credit this blog or provide a link to it. Many thanks.
This timeline is absolutely FREE but if you feel you'd like to make a contribution to the hard work that's gone into it, there are a couple of rather lovely story collections on the sidebar that you might like to put on your kindle for the price of a cup of coffee.
The Timeline is now version 3. This has a slight change to make it easier to select a range of years to view. It also has more character columns.
To download Wendy's Story Timeline V3, Click here.