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Welcome to Worldbuilding

One of the first story building decisions is where and when your story will take place. The promise you made to your reader (genre and subgenre as explored in the Story Building Blocks series) can help determine the setting.

If you choose a Historical or Western novel, you must research a specific time and place.

If you select Science Fiction and Fantasy, you can build a unique story world from the ground up to reinforce theme and tone.

With a Comedy, Con Heist & Prison Break, Gothic, Literary, Mystery, Road Trip, Romance, Team Victory, or Thriller & Suspense story skeleton, you can choose between a real place or a fictional place.

You can keep it vague (small town, big city). You can be specific. You can use a real place. You can base it on a real place and change the name.

Whether exploring a past era, navigating a dystopian/utopian earth, a Fantasy wonderland, or exploring an interplanetary Science Fiction world, setting should add dimension to your story. Too often it is a faintly sketched stage set.

When covering specific periods of time, it is crucial to get the details right. There are nitpickers out there waiting to tear your authenticity apart. Luckily, there are many resources to choose from. From the local library to the wonders of the Internet, there are vast troves of research to help you gather data.

Researching and developing key elements of your story world makes the place and time come alive for your readers and helps you avoid massive plot holes.

Inventing objects, places, and slang words make a Fantasy or Science Fiction world unique. 
Magical creatures and practices enrich your paranormal tale. You are only limited by your imagination. 

Highlighting unknown facts about the past or overturning accepted "facts" will make your historical setting memorable.

For the next few months, we will examine daily life, food, shelter, clothing, art, entertainment, education, government, morals, manners, myths, and legends. We will consider the topography, geography, flora, and fauna. 

You will decide how much your characters know, what they do about it, and how they navigate the world from conveyances to mechanization to technology.

Whether you stick to the comfort of your home town or build a unique fantasy world from scratch, the magic is in the details.

For advanced world-building, the SBB Build A World Workbook is available in print and e-book.

Other titles in the series:

Story Building Blocks: The Four Layers of Conflict available in print and e-book takes you from story seed to conflict outline. The fourteen companion Build A Plot Workbooks, in print and e-book, offer step by step development prompts: ComedyCon, Heist & Prison BreakFantasyGothicHistoricalHorrorLiterary
(Drama),  MysteryRoad TripRomanceScience FictionTeam VictoryThriller & SuspenseWestern.

SBB II Crafting Believable Conflict in print and e-book and the Build A Cast Workbook in print and e-book help you build a believable cast and add conflict based on the sixteen personality types.

SBB III The Revision Layers in print and e-book helps you self-edit your manuscript.

Free story building tools are available at  

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