worldbuilding
worldbuilding

Worldbuilding: How Much is too Much?

There is no such thing as too much worldbuilding. The greater the depth of the author’s knowledge of the setting of their book, the better. There is no detail too small or universe too big to be fully fleshed out in the author’s mind—or more likely, in extensive notes, maps, timelines, character bios, Plottr portfolios, and whatever else the often chaotic mind of the author chooses to store this information in. Unless you put it all in the text of your book. Hemingway said, “The dignity of movement of an iceberg is due to only one-eighth of it being above...

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Crafting a Magic System

If you ask a thousand fantasy authors what makes a good magic system, you’ll get a thousand different answers. I am not going to give you answer one thousand and one. I’m not going to do that simply because the details of your magic system don’t matter. It doesn’t even matter if your system has details. Or if there’s a system at all. Some authors—and their characters—treat magic like a science. If magic is common enough, it seems human nature that it would be studied, codified, even standardized to some extent. Spells are like recipes or language, things to be...

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Writing That Resonates

Resonate. It’s the word I use most often when talking about writing. But what does it really mean? Take the word home. The dictionary definition is “The place where one lives permanently, especially as a member of a family or household.” But that’s not what anyone thinks when they hear the word. They think of their home. What it looks like, what it sounds and smells like, how it feels to be there. They think of the people who occupy it and the often complex emotions they engender. They think about history and family and legacy and…well, you get the...

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