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Worldbuilding: Flora & Fauna

 Developing unique flora and fauna for your Science Fiction or Fantasy novel adds depth and intrigue to your story world. 

What plants (non-food) do they have in the area? List five to ten of each category. Insert them into descriptions and settings as needed. 

Did they have wild flowers, cultivated flowers, vines, weeds, toxic plants, bushes, trees, ground cover, grasses? 

What plants were of value to them? Tulips were once a valuable source of trade. Orchids can be extremely rare and expensive. Some plants are carnivores.

What domesticated animals were pets in your story world? Did they have pets?

What domesticated or wild animals were used for food or on farms?

What wild animals, dangerous, or magical animals roamed their world?

What kind of insects did they have?

What aquatic animals did they have?

What animals were endangered or held sacred?

Did they have sanctuaries, reserves, or zoos?

Did they have legal or illegal hunting or trading?

Did they worship any animal?

Did they have any myths or legends surrounding animals?

Did they have dinosaurs or know about them?

Have you invented Fantasy, magical, or futuristic animals?

Suggested resources:

1. A New World: England's First View of America by Kim Sloan
2. Biologia Centrali-Americana: Contributions to the Knowledge of the Fauna and Flora of Mexico and Central America by A. P. Maudslay
3. Fauna and Flora in the Middle Ages: Studies of the Medieval Environment and its Impact on the Human Mind by Sieglinde Hartmann
4. The Origin of Species: 150th Anniversary Edition by Charles Darwin
5. Nature Illuminated: Flora and Fauna from the Court of Emperor Rudolf II by Lee Hendrix & Thea Vignau-Wilberg
6. Amazonia: Flora Fauna by Salvador Monteiro & Lionel Kaz
7. Field Guide to the New England Alpine Summits: Mountaintop Flora And Fauna In Maine, New Hampshire, And Vermont by Nancy G. Slack & Allison W. Bell
8. Bogs of the Northeast by Charles W. Johnson
9. Trees and Shrubs of the Pacific Northwest: Timber Press Field Guide by Mark Turner & Ellen Kuhlmann
10. The Complete Guide to Edible Wild Plants by Department of the Army
11. The Wildlife of Southern Africa by Vincent Carruthers
12. The Biology of African Savannahs by Bryan Shorrocks & William Bates
13. Southern African Wild Flowers - Jewels of the Veld by John Manning & Colin Paterson-Jones
14. Trees of Panama and Costa Rica by Richard Condit, Rolando PĂ©rez & Nefertaris Daguerre
15. Handy Pocket Guide to Tropical Plants by Elisabeth Chan & Luca Invernizzi Tettoni 

Next week, we will explore governance.

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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