October 14th, 2008
Building a World

Cross-posted from the Bradford Bunch Blog

So right now I’m building a world. (In my head I’m hearing Let’s build a word! Let’s built it! Let’s build it now! which you won’t understand unless you have a child who watches Word World on PBS Kids.) Ahem. Anyway, right now I’m building a world (and some words too).

This world is new for me, having wrapped up the end of my Elemental Witches series with Witch Fury. I’m now hard at work on my novella and the first book of my new series for Berkley. It’s based in large part on Celtic mythology and I’m breaking my brain (honestly, not the strongest organ of my body anyway) on a whole bunch of books about it.

I’m not creating a who’s who of Celtic myth, though. I’m using it as a foundation. I’m weaving in legend from many countries and then adding my own twist. My “twist” is pretty significant. I’m hoping that my world is much different than others of authors who have also used these traditions to build their worlds.

It will be. Because that’s the really cool thing about minds. They’re all different. We all interpret things differently, “read” texts differently, ect. We all have different filters through which we view our worlds that are created as a result of just about everything that’s happened to us since we were born (well, and our basic genetic makeup) It’s what gives every author her individual voice.

So I’m wrestling with some significant questions like, what kind of religion exists for these people I’ve created? How are laws made and enforced? What are the conflicts between the different types of fae within this world? Lots of questions. So far I only have partial answers for some of them, but it’s amazing how more answers evolve as I write. If I sit there with the questions in front of me, trying to answer them like the essay section of an exam, I can’t do it. But if I put myself in the world, write from inside my character’s heads…it develops. That means a bit of rewriting, of course, but whatever is most effective, right?

Sometimes I wish I could rearrange my real world like that. Just a little rewrite over here…no more homophobia! Gone! Hit the delete key and make a little change over there…ethnic cleansing? *poof* Racism? Goodbye! Famine? Disappear! People putting melamine in baby formula? Never happened! You get the picture.

Aw, it would be nice anyway.

4 comments to “Building a World”

  1. I think that everyone wishes they could edit the world, it’s all about your point of view. If you gave the homophobe an edit button he’d delete homosexuals, racists would delete people of other colors etc. So while the idea is nice it would never work because the “haters” of the world would just pick something else to hate (people with brown hair or eyes, short people, tall people, fat people etc.) “Haters” always find a target because it is all they see, our differences instead of our similarities, and what sets us apart instead of what binds us all together.

  2. Boy was i preachy or what? i just want to add something that my older sister said to me (she raised me) and her children and i passed to mine when my boys were very small: “HATE is a four letter word and should not be taught to children. If no one taught their children to hate then the world would be a better place.”
    I appreciated the wisdom behind this statement much more as a parent than I did as a child and thanked my sister for sharing it with me.

  3. One of the things I enjoy most about being a writer is the desire and ability to create our own worlds. I stepped out of my writing comfort zone with the last few books I’ve written, delving back into an era before recorded history. There’s just enough information available about the period to make credible and identifiable references but enough information missing to flesh that world out any way that I please. I so thoroughly enjoyed the experience!

    And yes, Anya, you’re so right about how wonderful it would be to go ZAP! and positively change the world we live in. Instead, I guess we’ll just have to do it one little baby step at a time. 🙂

  4. Valerie — I totally agree with you. 🙂 Too bad there are still people out there teaching their kids to hate. Still, I do think it’s getting better. Every generation there’s less of it.

    Daisy — Where’s my magic wand, anyway?