Monday, August 27, 2012

A Whole New World

World building.

For writers and readers.

 A writer’s greatest challenge can be creating a world in which she or he believes in. The writer’s first job is to buy into the fantasy of their own creation. If the writer doubts the landscape, the infrastructure, the characters, it erodes the foundation of the story.
            Readers are savvy. They see transparently whether or not the story world is one they should or shouldn’t buy into. The writer’s enthusiasm for a project is contagious, and so is that of the reader's.
            As important as it is to add dimension to your characters, it’s important to nurture a believable environment no matter how fantasy based the plot may be—in fact, especially if the plot is fantasy based.
            The writer must first sell himself. It’s really that simple.

Here are a few suggestions:

1. Draw a map, so you can visualize on paper the lay of the land.
2. Make a list of locations, hot spots in geography, the schools, the city, the suburbs.
3. Give your world plenty of personality.
4. Let your location/world become a well-loved character within your story. 

What fictional worlds have drawn you in? Twilight? Hunger Games?
Do tell. I really want to know.

Addison Moore is the mother of four children and a graduate of the University of Southern California. She writes young adult fiction and eats way too much chocolate.

Feel free to visit Addison here:   Blog Twitter Facebook Amazon Author Page 


  1. How about a place called Paragon? :)

  2. World building is my favorite part of writing. Great post. Thanks for checking out my guest post on Alex's blog today. I'm a new follower.

  3. "Readers are savvy. They see transparently whether or not the story world is one they should or shouldn’t buy into."

    Such an important point! It is so easy for readers to put down books 20-50 pages in and move on to the next book in their TBR pile, creating a believable world - fantasy or not - is so, so important. And I love how you say a writer's, and then a reader's, enthusiasm is contagious.

  4. World building is what I like about a book. It's probably why I like books like Harry Potter so much. This is a great post.

  5. The worlds CS Lewis have created have all drawn me in, from The Chronicles of Narnia to the gritty Till We Have Faces. I can only hope to transport my readers as much as his books have transported me. Thanks for the great post!

  6. The best and richest worldbuilding I've ever read is Gay Gavriel Kay's Fionavar (The Fionavar Tapestry). Incredible. I literally felt like I'd BEEN there, traveled the places the characters traveled, saw the things they saw.

  7. I love the world in my current WIP so much - the location has become one of the characters and I can't imagine the story taking place anywhere else. Just wouldn't be the same. Of course, it's based on a real place that I've actually been to, but I still love it. Nothing wrong with drawing from what you know, IMO.