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World-building; how do you do it?

Discussion in 'The Authors' Café' started by Sid87, May 2, 2013.

  1. Sid87

    Sid87 I love shiny pokemon

    Not in the general sense of making everything vibrant and real, but in actually creating a fictional setting; how do you go about creating a world? Have you done it before? What did you find was a help in doing so? What were the biggest obstacles you encountered? Did you make a fictitious city? A country? Or a whole world? Did you get graphic and start sketching maps? Or were you able to keep everything straight in your head?
  2. Crystal

    Crystal The Pokemon Observer

    I made a whole new world for my current fic.
    Though it was not that difficult for me, because that new world was based on an already existing world.

    Firstly, I made a list of continents (rather say regions to be more specifically) in written data format, without any geographic position info at first. Then I started to think about what cities and/or villages will be in each continents (I only made the ones that will be important to my story, excluding all the unimportant ones that is not even going to feature in my story), and then think about the special locations within those cities such as gyms, market, museums, shrines, etc. (Again, I only made the ones that will be important to my fic)

    After these basic information listing, then I started to include other locations that is outside the cities/villages, which includes locations like mountains or hills, lakes and/or rivers, forest and/or plains, etc. And again, I only made the locations that is important to my story, any other places that will not be featured in my fic were not included in my data sheet.

    When I had planned my world up to such level, simply a list of geographic informations does not satisfy my enthusiasm, so that is the time I started to draw out the actual map of the world I created, and that is then the first time I actually go think about the actual specific geographic position and/or location of each place. First placed the continents onto the map, then the cities onto each continents, and then the other significant geographic locations, and finally fill in the emptiness in between within unnamed plains and forest.

    When the basic map is done, I then started to think this continents seems to be too empty, so I'll add another location to this place, whether it is important to the story or not. This process had performed over and over, again and again until I'm satisfied about the map. Now, the map of my original world is comparable to the scale of current Pokeearth in Serebii.net, and the locations that will be used in my fic were accounted for approximately only 60% of all the locations.

    And just another unrelated comment. I think this topic about world-building had already been asked before in the Authors' Cafe for several times in the past.
  3. jireh the provider

    jireh the provider Video Game Designer

    I did the same thing you did in my Feli Chronicles (an original novel). Though in written format as of now. Researching any country can do. In the world of my novel, I am mixing Philippines and Japan's perspective. I'll be planning on doing a fusion of Philippines and America, and on my third series, Philippines and Europe.

    My series will have a mix of historical references on what the Spanish, the Americans, and the Japanese contribute.

    And yes, I will include on the bad things that America, Japan, and Spain did in the Philippines in terms of historical references in a fantasy term.

    Top 3 Invaders that captured Philippines in history: Spanish --> America --> Japan

    But I managed to create a visual look of Xianix Village (in my novel's termilology, the largest farm land in my world filled with rural country style houses), courtesy of Minecraft.

    I'll be honest from experience, a bit of Minecrafting will help you build an idea of your world. Maximum creativity at its finest.

    Though I sadly lost my file of the Tanabata Family's house in Minecraft. Sigh...
  4. Mr Dragon

    Mr Dragon Crazy Dude

    With world building there's always two ways you can go about it. Either build the world using what you see in the story as a starting point (so you start with the first outline of the story) or you can build the world first, starting with major figures and histories, and use this as a starting point to write the story itself.

    For examples of the former think The Chronicles Of Narnia or Harry Potter. For an example of the latter think The Lord Of The Rings.

    When I've world built, I've generally started with one story, and built histories and futures as well as back-stories for characters, and build upon them as I write more.

    (I know the examples I used aren't what most peoples idea of world building is, but they were just to illustrate the point).
  5. Karpi

    Karpi Forever a pirate

    If you want to know how authors seem to have a perfectly-crafted world that makes sense, here's why:

    They write the whole thing beforehand for themselves so as to get the plot down, impose order on the plot (which becomes your world), then start to write the version that the public will see and start to take other people's advice. Notice how the part where you talk about writing on the internet is at the end.

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