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Tuesday Tip #31

I'm in need of tips for the upcoming weeks, so if you have one to share, please send it in!  Today, I have another great tip from Lisa Nowak who seems to be full of great writing ideas.  Please visit her blog to show your appreciation. 

It's important to have a clear sense of the passage of time in your book, but that can be difficult to do from notes. I find it easier to have a visual cue, so I use Excel to create a calendar with squares large enough to jot down major plot points in. There are calendar-generating programs available as well.

You can also find calendars for past years online, which can be convenient if you're writing historical fiction. The website below allows you to create calendars for different years in various countries which include holidays and phases of the moon.

Love this idea, Lisa!  Especially for projects where the time line really matters.  Thank you again for another great tip.  I truly appreciate them.


  1. Great tip! I've often make calendars to help me revise. I write contemporary novels, and calendars help me keep track of my characters' school days, weekends, sports practices, days off etc.

  2. Thanks Lisa!

    Especially about the phases of the moon....nice one - that's important for my story!!

    Thanks Casey - good holiday?

  3. Coincidentally - I've just done this myself! I'm using the 2012 summer calendar. DH thought I was crazy on the floor w/ my spreadsheet, but it's really helping!

  4. Great advice. I've made calendars before. Especially important when you're writing novels that revolve around a school year and if your characters are involved in sports.

  5. Great tip. I often note dates & weeks past in a short outline I create as I'm drafting/revising my manuscript.

  6. Thanks for the tip and the link. I normally keep a sheet of paper with me and keep notes of what month it is in each chapter. Of course, in one work in progress, it was really easy, since each chapter was a different month. : )

  7. I bookmarked. Thanks for the link.

    I've used rough calendars in the past, this will help me be more organized.

  8. That website is awesome. I have the calendar for the year of my story currently pinned up next to my computer with all my handwritten notes on it.

  9. Great tip. I did something similar for my first novel and it really helped me figure out some of the plot problems I was having. A great tool.

  10. I've gone to other places for moon info, but this is a great link. Thanks, Lisa and Casey!

  11. I sometimes wear earplugs when I'm writing, even if I'm alone in the house and there are no noises bothering me. Something about the plugs focuses my brain. Can't explain it, but it truly does help.

  12. Great tip! I think I will use this for my current WIP.

  13. Wow, here I thought I was just some overly organized geek, and it turns out other people are using calendars, too! I'm glad you all enjoyed the tip.