I've been having trouble with thinking how to create a sort of sci-fi alien world but with humans as the dominant race - much like Star Wars, I suppose, except there is a focus on only a few, but majorly important characters. How should I go about writing it/making it? Any tipson how to approach it? (I can give more details about it if you'd like to know the specifics)
The first thing I thought of was the idea of humans having moved beyond Earth (since it became uninhabitable, or just because they had the technology to explore) and colonized other planets. Humans evolved on Earth, so it’s unlikely that the exact same species would evolve on another planet. It’s more likely that humans would colonize another planet and be the dominant species there, if it worked out that way. Hope that helps!
So... where exactly do you start world building? I've got a story and plot to work with, but I need to spend more time developing different races, cultures, and even the map itself. But there's so much to do I don't know where to start! It's so confusing! Where do I begin?
Maybe start with the map itself? So you know where everything is located, and where all these people are from. Then you can “zoom in” and focus on the races/cultures that live there, but I imagine they have to have a place to live first! There’s no real “right” place to start with worldbuilding, it depends on the situation. What I find is that you just have to start in the first place, no matter where you start. It’s kind of like an archaeological dig - you start in one place, and you eventually uncover the whole thing, no matter where you started. It’ll all get done eventually, it just has to be started.
Anonymous asked:you've had to have been asked this a million and twelve times but i'll make it a million and thirteen. how do you organize all of this information? the species anatomy, cultural vines, blueprints, character bio's, and maps. dear God I've more maps then brain cells anymore. how do you not lose your sanity? i feel i should be in the funny farm weaving baskets. sorry. you've got help for so much else. could you offer some advice here?
I did a Tech Spotlight about this a while back, about a resource called TiddlyWiki, in which you can make your own wiki for your storyworld. I’ve used it in the past (and it has a nice search function, and you can link to other pages you make in it), and it’s proven really useful to me. Aside from that, my advice is this - lots and lots of organized folders on your computer. That’s the only way I manage my stuff, by making it as easy as possible to find.
Anonymous asked:I don't know if you've covered this before, but do you have any resources for writing desert civilizations? I'm writing a story about a culture that is surviving the aftermath of a great desolation where most of the planet has become wasteland.
I don’t have any specific resources that I can think of and I haven’t written an article about it yet, but these are some things you might want to research:
- Desert climate and the animals/plants that live there (these will mostly be hardy species that can live in a really harsh environment where there will be little resources)
- Different desert cultures and how they adapted to the climate, and what sort of lifestyle they had
- Keep in mind what sort of wasteland it is - if it’s just a sand desert or a tundra, things can grow there, but if the world was made a wasteland by war/chemicals/radiation and many things were destroyed, it will take a long time for things to grow there (and a lot of species can’t survive in the first place in the presence of toxins like bad chemicals or radiation).
I think my main point is to just read as much as you can about the subject? Wikipedia’s a good starting point to get an overview, but there are lots of books and things about the subject as well. My Geography/Land, Food, and Science (specifically the agriculture section) articles might be of use to you.
Hello. I find myself in the midst of a world building exercise and at a crossroads. I have a lot of species/culture concepts that I'm playing with right now but I'm not sure whether I want to take the whole thing in a fantasy or science fiction direction. When I've thought out the sci-fi end I end up with way more complicated back story than I need, but I don't want to be 'traditional fantasy' with my non-human species. Any advice on how to navigate this?
Well, with the sci-fi angle, you don’t have to use all the backstory. I generally make lots and lots of backstory, and then use as much is necessary in the story. I just find that it’s nice to have the backstory there, in case I need it, but I know that I might not use it. Sometimes you need little details as you write that you didn’t realize you needed, when you were planning.
As for fantasy, there’s definitely other ways to go than traditional fantasy! You could make up your own species, for instance. I have some ‘traditional’ species in my fantasy, but also some I made up on my own. It’s also possible to do fantasy in a setting that is definitely not ‘medieval fantasy.’ I like urban/modern fantasy a lot, myself. If your story is set on Earth, you could pick a time period and turn it fantasy? I have a story set in the 20s that involves magic and elementals, and it’s a lot of fun. And if it’s not based on Earth, you can still pull things from that time period (like a world that’s just starting to get involved in industrial things can be based on Earth’s Industrial Revolution, or at least take things from it). So there’s a lot of ways to jazz up fantasy so it’s not traditional, medieval fantasy! I hope that helps! :)
Anonymous asked:Is it a bad thing to have too many details of a world? (i.e. I have continents, countries, major cities and minor cities.) Could several races be too confusing/much? (10+)
The more details you have, the more real and fascinating your world will seem, but it also ups the difficulty level of portraying it correctly. I have a huge amount of details in my worlds, but I try to only use the parts that are relevant to the plot I’m writing. A lot of the detail I brainstorm is there just in case I need to use it - sometimes I do, sometimes I don’t. I figure just use what’s relevant to your plot, and your main characters? I think 10+ races would be a bit too much to describe in the story, unless your character encounters people of each of those races (which is perfectly plausible), but you don’t need to write those random details in (There are 10 races in this world, this is the major city, this is the minor city) as exposition, because that’s infodumping.
So basically, it’s all right to have that much information (look at JK Rowling - I imagine she has tons of little details about the wizarding world, and while she didn’t use all of them, she used a lot of them because her book series was so expansive), but just use what’s relevant to your character at that point in the plot and don’t infodump (especially if the character wouldn’t know that information otherwise, or if it’s not relevant to the plot).
firstly answering your questions
- they are human
- the world does branch out from earth
- the “apocalypse” as i hesitate to call it is basically a bunch of hive minded sapient aliens appearing pretty much out of nowhere killing all permanent political offices of the overarching government trashing the economy and absconding without a trace allowing a melee a huit amongst the other powerful factions over whatever is left
- as you may be able to guess this presents problems for the common people who cannot defend themselves along with the peaceful economists who now have nothing to do but get robbed of the resources they can scrounge from their savings and die or join up with one of the remaining powers of the world
also the main cast of characters is all human except for one of the alien folk who broke free of the hive mind and warns the rest to prepare for the oncoming attack
my concern was addressing how people would react without being dare i say stereotypical (i.e. manic raving/catatonia/etc.) as i have little experience with the whole apocalyptic business
i think that’s it if i’m missing something let me know and i’ll add it in thank thank kisses
Thanks for answering the questions, that helps. :) Response is under the cut!
im sorry for being so vague i had to trim it for the character limit on asks can i send a fan mail instead
That’s fine! The ask limit is annoying. :( Could you submit it, instead of fanmail? I can’t publish fanmail, but I can stick my response in your submission. :)
ok so the thing im writing for nanowrimo is a futurey thing like shortly before during and shortly after a galaxywide apocalypse that doesnt wipe everyone out but drastically changes the way of living for everyone and i have literally no idea how to approach the psychology of the general population do you have any advice
This is a really vague question, so if you want help with this, here are some things you might want to mention?
- What species is this? Are they human? Is this on Earth?
- Is it based on the real world, or is it a world you made up from scratch?
- What’s the apocalypse? How does it happen?
- How does it drastically change the way of living for everyone? What happens to the planet?
I’m not sure what you mean by “the psychology of the general population,” either. Do you mean how they’d react and cope with an event like this? It honestly depends on the event, who they are, what planet this is, and how/when it happened. I imagine they’d be fairly traumatized, though? But that’s all I can really get from something this vague.