Creating the Perfect WorldA Lesson by Dusty
The most important thing in a believable fantasy story is the place where it occurs. The realm, world, planet, time, and setting where your characters exist. If the story is set elsewhere than planet Earth, or on a planet Earth that we, being the readers, are not fully aware of the logistics of, then this lesson is for you.
So, you are writing a fantasy. This could either be the most trying or the most rewarding time of your writing career. A fantasy, depending on the writer, can be either very easy or very challenging. There is the aspect of creating a world that seems nearly impossible, as well as filling that world with religion, countries, ruling families or governments, wars, a history, and all that other fun stuff. However, creating your own world also means you are in charge of everything. You do not have to research cultures or diseases, fill in your blank spots on history, or even google every other sentence you type to be sure your facts are right. You are the master of this domain, in charge of everyone and everything. Cultures, civilization, time periods and what goes with them, history, Gods and Godesses: all of this is your own creation. Now, this is a tremendous task and one of the most important things to consider when writing a fantasy. So, I will give below a list of questions to ask yourself while writing about your world. However, when writing about your world, remember that you do not have to rename every single star in the sky or constellation at night. You do not have to rewrite the laws that govern nature, physics, gravity, etc. If you attempt to challenge everything the reader has known before or make them feel as if they are studying for a final in college, the actual story of your fantasy will not be as enjoyable. Keep it simple, real, and easy. The world needs to be believable, but as much of it that you can keep in check with what the reader already knows will make the story that much easier to comphrend. Nobody wants to read a book they have to spend studying the first 30 pages of it for.
Answer these questions in your story or in a map, appendix, glossary, or anything else you can stick onto the end or beginning of your story. Limit how much you talk about your world. Use short facts and sound sure of yourself, almost as if you are an interesting
Are the laws of physics or gravity different? How about magic? What are the rules of that and how do they
Is most everything similar to that on earth? How are they different? Is the sky still blue and the grass still green? Is the sun called the Sun? Are the stars and moon celestial beings or hunks of rocks floating in space?
Are there several different races other than human? Are there elves, dwarves, cenetaurs, werewolves, vampires? What laws/customs do they follow and what social status do they occupy within the region? Where are they found? Are they shrouded in mystery and rare or common and seen in nearly every city? Are they considered intherior and enslaved or considered as all-powerful and given important positions over humans?
What is the general population of this world? How many countires are there? Who rules them or what type of government do they have? What is the existing relationship and past relationships between these seperate countries or regions?
Where does the world's magic or different species come from? What are the conflicting views on this topic between each religion? What is the price of magic? Does the user lose part of their lifeforce with each spell? Do they have a limited amount of it? Is it an exhaustible resource? How is it decided who has magic? Is is genetic, random, chosen by the Gods? What are the laws in each region governing magic? Are there special schools, guilds, or opportunities for magic-users, or is it scorned and rejected?
Is magic the same in each user, everyone following the same spells, rules, and rituals to use it? Or are there different power levels and spells that only experienced or powerful users can create? How common is each power level?
What is your world called? What are the names of the countries and what are the laws important to the plot of your story? Who rules each country and how is the ruler decided? Or is the country governed by some form of government? What is the most-relateable time period to this world? Do planes exist? Cars? How do people get from one place to another? Do they ride horses? Travel in teleporters? Cast a spell?
I hope this has helped some organize their thoughts and create a believable, touchable world. Remember though, there is much more to creating a world than just this. Dream about your world, concentrate on it, feel it, live in it. In order for anything else in your story to be real, the world must be real.
Added on December 22, 2009
Last Updated on September 4, 2010
Crown Point, IN
AboutHey everyone! My name is Aly. I am 15 years old and live with my mother and brother in a house with our 7 pets. We have two cats -Matti and Amber, a dog- Skunky, a hedgehog- Harley, a hermit crab -Aug..