Some stories are so complicated they require not just one,
but two timelines to tell everything. Often, this is the result of an intricate and integral
backstory, such as we might find in Margaret Atwood’s The Year of the Flood or Ann Brashares’s My Name Is Memory.
|Novels with dual timelines can be tricky to pull off, but they can also be rewarding writing and reading experiences.|
1. Make both timelines equally interesting.
2. Balance the timelines.
3. Avoid “filler” scenes.
4. Double-check plot points.
5. Avoid confusing transitions.
6. Tighten timelines within the third act.
Tell me your opinion: Have you wanted to write a story with dual timelines?
Related Posts: Should You Outline Backwards?
Does Your Story Need Subplots?
Don’t Tie off Your Scenes With a Ribbon
Click the “Play” button to Listen to Audio Version (or subscribe to the Wordplay podcast in iTunes).
Story by K.M. Weiland