See you soon: Summer Drinks are on Saturday 20 July
The Writers' Greenhouse

Writers' links

Use these plot generators as springboards for writing exercises and to get a feel for the essential ingredients of a story or what elements you personally need in place to start writing.

Tools and resources for creating Imaginary Worlds (fantasy, science fiction, and all the related genres). I've repeated links from other sections if they're especially useful for world-building.

This is an idiosyncratic list of sites I've found useful, rather than a comprehensive one. Some of the categories lean towards US/UK info, but I've started with more general links wherever possible. If you have a great link you'd like to share, please email me so I can add it.

General history & culture

  • BBC history website, with an excellent range of eras and an interactive timeline (now archived; still available)
  • Wikipedia's timeline of inventions
  • Advertising archives from before 1900s to present day
  • Retrowow – Retro furniture, style and fashion in Britain from the 1950s to 1980s
  • The People's History– Detailed summaries of daily life in the US from the 1800s to present, including cost of living, events, fashion, popular culture (music, TV shows, etc), sport, and technology a great one-stop shop



  • US Naval Observatory – Sun and moon data for a year, searchable
  • UK Met Office– Past weather events from 1990 onwards; climate summaries by month and season from 2001 onwards



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