As writers we utilize our imaginations to make the unimaginable into reality in our narratives. There are no barriers, no limits to what we can create. Distant worlds, alternative realities and curious creatures are brought to life for our readers.
Our imaginations are a vital tool for our writing and we need to encourage it to flourish. We already ‘see’ things others may not even consider as story potential – such as a unique hairstyle, a particular speech pattern or even an outfit. Being able to incorporate things we see, hear and touch, no matter their original source, is how we create. Let your imagination free and enjoy the process of creation.
How do you ensure your imagination is not stifled?
It may seem rather ‘easy’ to create a whole new world, but in actual fact there are numerous hurdles we need to jump, metaphorically speaking. Fantasy readers, in particular, are extremely meticulous in their review and the consistency in fantasy works and the ‘laws’ of the land therein. This fact is obvious when you see the amount of sci-fi conventions and the followers of such programs as Star Trek.
This Q&A page is a great way to find out if your creation will stand up to scrutiny.
Of course world building is not restricted to fantasy. If you are setting your narrative in a particular time period you must ensure everything your characters use and interact with, are from that era. A 1940’s housewife will not have the luxury of a microwave oven, for example. However, when you have time travel within your story greater detail is required to ensure each era is true to its original. This not only gives the reader clues as to where and when your characters are but also gives your protagonist obstacles to overcome. Unless of course you have a time traveler visiting!
A friend of mine. J.E. McKnight, is an excellent time travel author and he is meticulous in ensuring the ‘time-line’ is correct as well as ensuring the ‘vehicle’ of travel is believable. You can purchase his book here: https://www.smashwords.com/books/view/264043
With attention to detail and solid back story, every narrative can be believable no matter how fantastical the characters, creatures or situations. Most of us ‘believe’ in Hobbits, Harry Potter and the like because the narratives are so strong in the basics of world building.
I have used reincarnation in my novel,The Twesome Loop, an alternative future in Life in Slake Patch and magical creatures in Ockleberries to the Rescue. If you can imagine the inconceivable – you can write it.
What worlds, characters or creatures have you created?
Happy Easter Sunday to those of you who celebrate it. I am sharing a small part of my current WIP today. It is a children’s story about two woodland sprite’s who heal sick and injured animals in the forest they live in. It is very rough as it was my NaNoWriMo novel, so apologies for editing errors I have not got to as yet. The title is Ockleberries to the Rescue.
The following excerpt is the end of a chapter where the sprite’s home was seriously damaged by a storm. Their deer and beaver friends have come to help re-build. I would appreciate comments on word usage and an idea of the target age I should go for.
“That’s a very impressive bit of building you have there, Crispin.”
“It’s all thanks to the beavers to be honest, Dash.”
At that moment Matilda appeared carrying something in her mouth. She lay it down in front of Tansy.
“A home warming gift of sorts, Tansy something for the new room. I hope you like it.”
Tansy picked up the beautifully made bowl. It had finely gnawed edges and sides.
“It is exquisite. Thank you Matilda. There was no need to bring anything; you and your family have been more than kind helping us.”
“It was my pleasure and anyway I enjoy making finer objects. I knew the boys could cope without me for a while. Looks like they have been more than just coping.”
“Yes, they have been very industrious. We only have the holes to block up now and Crispin can hang the door into its new place.”
“So if you are happy to finish on your own I think I will take my boys home.”
“We can certainly finish up ourselves, thank you all for an amazing job. We know the extra room will be a real bonus when helping our fellow woodland creatures.”
Arm in arm in front of their new façade, Tansy and Crispin waved the beaver family off. It would take a few weeks for Crispin to make extra furniture and Tandy more shelves but they were happy knowing it was all for the benefit of the animals that came into their care.