World-Builders Series: World and Land Creation
World-Builders Series: Special Item Creation
World-Builders Series: Race Creation
World-Builders Series: Creature Creation
World-Builders Series: Deity Creation
World-Builders Series: Character Creation
World-Builders Series: Building Creation
World-Builders Series: Vehicle Creation
Over the last year or so, I have had several people ask me how I create my fantasy and science fiction worlds when I write. At first, I was stumped. How do I describe the methods I use to create my world maps, my races and creatures, my cultures? I would try, and I would try hard, but in the end, I only ended up with a glassy-eyed conversationalist who had long since zoned out. So, one day, I looked at my process, and I decided that I would stream-line it, create templates that would not only help me but would also help other writers and even game players who had to create their characters for the worlds they and their friends played in.
For the rest of the month of October and all of November, I will be sharing the eight templates that I use to build my worlds. Some of the worksheets are thorough, walking you through the ins and outs of what you need to create, and others serve more as jumping-off points. You may use only one to create a character, but you may use several of them to create a land, and all of them to create a world. It all depends on how in-depth you want to be when it comes to your world.
City and Building Creation
Over the last few weeks, we have been using my worksheets to build a world and populate it. We have created our land masses and realms, any magical items that may exist within them, added races of people and creatures, and we have discussed religions and characters. This week, we are covering the creation of cities and popular buildings. You are probably asking yourself why I included buildings in that statement. Well, if you have large parts of your book that take place within the same building, you need to know every detail about that building.
For example, in my first book from the Ithmere series (that I promise will be published one day soon), my main character Relanka goes into an apothecary in the posh district of the city. I described the place very well, to the point of capturing the smell of the herbs that lingered in the air. But the only description I had of that apothecary was in that one chapter. So, the next time one of my characters walked into that shop, I had to pull out my other manuscript and dig for it because I didn’t have it written down in my series notebook. (I have now photocopied those pages out and stuck them into the book for future reference.) Granted, every character is going to see the place differently, but the basic description of the place should be the same (the built-in shelving mentioned in the first book wouldn’t have moved to the middle of the room because it was attached to the walls).
Now, a city is no where as large as a land mass, so instead of using the Land Creation sheet for my city, I sort of “wing it” here. I make up the main buildings that I know I need to have in the city because they are in scenes of my story, or will be, and I draw a rough map so that I know where they are in the city. Then I fill in the area around them with houses, shops, the town market, the village square—whatever I need to have around those buildings to make my city or town fit in with the rest of my novel.
So, print out a copy of the worksheet below and have a little fun.
Use this worksheet as much as you want, share it with others, and create all the buildings that you want. Please do not claim this worksheet as your own, and give proper credit to me by linking back to my website. Thank you!