Characters and Scheduling Conflicts

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Julia takes place on a pretty tight timeline.

In my first draft, the action took place over many months…lots of time elapsed, seasons turned, action dragged. This approach didn’t work for several reasons, so I tightened the timeline.

Now, I’m looking at a story that takes place in such a short amount of time that when editing a certain scene, I’ve asked myself: if it takes seven hours to drive from point A to point B, can this really happen on a Tuesday? So, I wrote out a schedule. And then, stupidly, threw it away.

When editing for the third and fourth time, those places where time seems to stand still or bend unbelievably seem to crop up more and more. So I had to begin the process all over again. And again. And again, because each time I think that’s it, I’m done. I’ve found the last warp in the space-time continuum.

The last time I went through this, I swear that I saved the schedule…but I have no idea where I saved it, so I’m back at it.

This time, I’m tempted to actually enter it into my iCal, but it feels weird:

iCal week. Shows lunch date and "Julia at airport" on Monday. The rest of the week is empty.

Julia on iCal

How do you handle your story timelines?

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4 thoughts on “Characters and Scheduling Conflicts

  1. Badly.

    No, lol. For the first draft I don’t worry about it. I just write everything that happens and a general amount of time (“A week later…” “Three years later…”) Later I go back in, write down the timing of everything that happened, and make sure my first guesses were correct. If not, I fix them.

    Love the idea of the Ical though!

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