Ok, this is probably not a snack but closer to a five-course meal. Never the less, I am requesting it, although I am open for recommendations regarding existing software. I have looked at a bunch of stuff, but have thus far been unable to find something that can do the things I want, or if they can come close to it, do so in a way that makes it usable for me. (Also, I think I muttered about this subject in the past somewhere on these forums, but I can't find it nor can I be bummed to search for hours...)
I have been wanting to write some story for ages. I've got snippets etc lying around, and they are not the problem. I've got a personal wiki set up too, so that is not a problem either. But neither a text writing tool (like LSB XE) nor said wiki can solve my most majestic problem: custom calendars.
With a story set in a sort of medieval / oriental setting, it is natural that time is not set up as scientific as we have it with the Gregorian calendar. It tends to be measured in terms of years since an emperor started reigning for example. And similarly, some calendars may end up in simultaneous use in different countries or whatnot. Since my story is meant to cover several centuries (if you do something, do it big from the start
) I need proper flexibility to deal with this sort of data. I have tried expressing things in a single (master) calendar, but that just hampers me way too much.
So, a small list of my wants/needs:
- custom calendars, which can be defined into smaller fictional units. For example (making this up on the spot), one calendar might have years that consist out of 6 'peries', which consists out of 9 months, which consist out of five 'turnings', which are in turn seperated in concepts like weeks, days, hours and minutes. This one is extra convoluted to make a point - there may be more or less units than our simple year/month/week/day/hour/minute/second system.
- different calendars need to be expressable in terms of other calendars, for example by equating one unit from one calendar to another (number of) unit(s) from another calendar, and giving a defined anchor date from which all else could be equated. For example, for season-based calendars, one might equate four seasons to be a year, and the anchor date for one as starting at the beginning of winter, and the other starting at summer. Silly example, but it gets the point across.
- different timelines can be constructed, with events expressed in one or multiple calendars.
- timelines of choice can be displayed next to eachother allowing the writer to plan out events
- events can be put on multiple timelines
- some metadata per 'event' might be nice (to denote location, type of the event (traveling, key plot, etc), etc), but this is not required
As a programmer, I could probably write this myself. But I suck at GUI stuff, and the problem with a tool like this for me is that _if_ I ended up writing it, I'd never get to use it. I'd waste all my time on improving it, adding stuff etc... and I actually want to get to work on this story I keep putting off because I cannot manage it to my own satisfaction.
So, any suggestions for good tools, or anyone who feels like writing it... please do.
You'd help me out big time, and I have DocoCredits lying around for the person that gives me the golden goose of timelining (coding snack or existing software; it does not matter.)