World Building

Geography, Geo-Politics, Maps

Geography, Geo-Politics, Maps

Photo by Brett Zeck on Unsplash Ever notice how, when watching science fiction shows, that when encountering the strange, alien race from Tau Celtic 4 or wherever, the aliens all look and sound exactly the same? Like, the entire population of the planet dress alike, speak the same language, and appear to share the same societal mores? Whereas,…

Mythology, Origins, History, Language, Culture, Religion

Mythology, Origins, History, Language, Culture, Religion

Photo by 贝莉儿 NG on Unsplash Readers want to be transported out of their reality and into a brand new world, but that only works if the imaginary setting feels real to them. Fleshing out your worlds by giving them their own history, folklore, languages, and cultures can create the illusion of a world which feels lived in,…

Genre Setting, Fantasy & Sci-Fi

Genre Setting, Fantasy & Sci-Fi

If readers want exciting storylines, plot twists, relationships, and characters, they can find them in good books from pretty much any genre. But speculative fiction has something which makes it stand out. Fantasy and science fiction authors have total freedom in creating the imaginary settings of their stories. These settings aren’t simply used as background…

Genre Setting: Alternative Earth

Genre Setting: Alternative Earth

Photo by Victor Garcia on Unsplash Speculative Fiction, at its heart, is a game of “whatifsmanship.” What if Faster Than Light Travel was really achievable? What if Elves and Dwarves and Orcs really existed? What if Charlize Theron could really find Seth Rogen appealing? One of the most intriguing forms of fiction then is “Alternative Earth” fiction. Take…

Genre Setting: Real World

Genre Setting: Real World

Photo by Lena Bell on Unsplash Great writers love shortcuts. No, really. Given that folks like George RR Martin can take eons to finish a book, that may seem counter-intuitive. But the truth of the matter is that writers love things that enable them to get down to the nitty-gritty and write our stories. Which is one of…

Writing Place w/the Five Senses

Writing Place w/the Five Senses

Designing the settings within a story can be a creative person’s dream, especially in genre fiction where the only limitation is the author’s imagination. Sometimes an explosion of place description is just what the story demands. Other times you need to show restraint. Knowing what description to include and when is made much easier if…