Thursday, January 18, 2018

Posted by Laurel Garver on Thursday, January 18, 2018 2 comments
by guest Kandi J. Wyatt

As you open the pages of a good book, you are beckoned into a new world, a place where magic may exist or where people travel between planets on trains. The possibilities are endless and only limited by the author’s imagination and effort. When an author does an excellent job of world-building, the reader longs to climb into the pages of the book and not leave.

Harry Potter, Marvel Universe, Star Wars, Middle Earth, Narnia, and the ‘World’ of Game of Thrones are all examples of worlds that exist because an author had a vision and then dove into world-building. World-building takes thought and consideration to be thorough. Many different aspects go into creating a world that feels real.


via GIPHY

1. Places

The most common aspect of the world is where it’s set. Is it the seas of the Caribbean or is it the halls of Hogwarts? Are there woods, mountains, or deserts? Currently, I’m working on creating a planet. It will have a combination of all extremes. Hannah Heath has written on how to not fall into the rut of common places.

2. People

Once we have a place, we now need to know who inhabits these spaces. As I create my worlds, I make my people fit the place they inhabit, or if they don’t then that’s part of the plot. How would where they live affect their physical attributes and their psychology? In my Dragon Courage world, the rainy marshes of the Carr led to some depression in the characters. The word Carr came from a Celtic background and so my characters tend to have red hair and the tempers that are associated with redheads. My middle grade fantasy, Journey from Skioria, has people that are short, hairy, and have nails that extend out to climb trees since they live in trees.

3. Culture

Early on in my life, I was introduced to different cultures through missionaries that came through my home. As I grew older, I went and visited missionaries in Arizona and New Mexico and was able to see for myself a different culture as I worked with the Navajo and Hopi tribes. Later, I lived in Ecuador for two different years and stayed in Mexico for a month. These experiences let me understand that each people group has their own unique set of laws, norms, and taboos. Why should our stories be any different?

What cultural aspects do you need to add to make your stories? In the north of the Dragon Courage world, tradition holds sway. Since “change comes slowly to dragons” it takes a war for tradition to change. The southern dragon colony of Boeskay sets up on the bluffs overlooking the river. Riders sit out on their porches at night and watch the sunset. Sometimes, it’s the little touches that make the world come to life. It could be as simple as referring to years by a specific season, or it may be as simple as an expression. H. L. Burke, in her book Beggar Magic, uses the expression, ‘By the strains!’ The strains are a significant aspect of the world and are held in awe by all.

4. Language

As a language teacher, I love thinking of how language affects us, but I’ve yet to put it into my books. I did create an accent more than anything in Dragon’s Revenge. For this new project that I’m brainstorming, I’m thinking of creating a script at least for the world, if not some language.

Think of Harry Potter. How would the books have been different if it wasn’t for

via GIPHY


5. Beliefs

As all believers know, our beliefs are what define us. We will do anything for something we believe in. This should be true of your characters as well. I’ve been challenged recently to go beyond the typical on this area. Hannah Heath (if you don’t follow her, you should. She has an amazing blog for writers.) shared some very thought provoking ideas on how to write Christian fantasy and religion.

6. Technology

How do your characters get around? Do they use the horse and buggy or are there airships? How does your protagonist wash her clothes? What? You haven’t thought of that? Then you should! No, really, you should. It’s not just the steampunk genre or subgenre that should have technology. Does your antagonist spread rumors via social media and his iphone? That’s technology at work, too.

7. Mythology

The most well-known author for having mythology in his work was J. R. R. Tolkien. He wanted to provide a mythos for Great Britain and ended up creating Middle Earth. When I wrote Journey from Skioria, I had fun having characters share little myths. You don’t have to create elaborate stories, but know what a few are or have an idea of what the mythos looks like for your world.

8. Animals

As you build your world, realize there should be more than just people, or aliens, living in it. Who or what else inhabit it? As I’m brainstorming for my newest idea, I realized that a mole-like animal may come in handy. Mythical creatures most often coming into fantasy stories, but think outside the box. What other animals would make your world right? Would it be a cat, a dog, horses, whales, kangaroos, or cheetahs?


If you stop at these eight, your world may be complete, but there are so many other things to consider as well. Think of your own life. What influences it? Add those to your world-building. Sure, you might not use all of it in your actual writing, but if you know it, then it will come out into your story-telling.

About the Author

Even as a young girl, Kandi J. Wyatt had a knack for words. She loved to read them, even if it was on a shampoo bottle! By high school Kandi had learned to put words together on paper to create stories for those she loved. Nowadays, she writes for her kids, whether that's her own five or the hundreds of students she's been lucky to teach. When Kandi's not spinning words to create stories, she's using them to teach students about Spanish, life, and leadership.

Connect with Kandi:
Website / Facebook / Google Plus / Twitter / Pinterest / Goodreads / Amazon

About the Books

In a world where dragons and humans live in peace with each other, it is a privilege to be a dragon rider, but riders, like everyone else, must find their purpose. In this series, twins Ruskya and Duskya fight for their dragon’s futures and their lives! Braidyn struggles with balancing justice and mercy as he searches for a stolen nestling. Kyn and a new friend, Ben’hyamene, discover a breed of wild dragons which have been at war with humans for four hundred years, and the two learn that peace is better than revenge. Kyn helps Duskya and her daughter, Carryn, search for a young rider who stumbles upon a slave trade. Carryn learns that bitterness leaves a person in bondage as much as being a slave. Follow along the riders’ quest in this exciting middle grade fantasy series by author Kandi J Wyatt.


The One Who Sees Me 

Teenage slave girl Faru’s life has been turned upside down when she discovers she’s been traded to a new master, forcing her to leave all she‘s ever known. Upon her arrival, Faru meets a friend, Cailean, who helps her adjust to life in the strange location. Life settles into a new pattern, and romance blossoms between the young friends. But as soon as they plan to get married, another proposal comes about – one that cannot be ignored. Being a slave means not always marrying who you love.
On a daring journey to heal her heart, Faru encounters the Existing One. Will she trust Him and do His bidding even if what He requests is so hard?

Follow Faru’s tale in author Kandi J Wyatt’s retelling of a Biblical story found in the Old Testament book of Genesis, showing that when things don’t make sense, God will guide the way.

Get it HERE
Read reviews from Pursue Simple Joy / Julie L. SpencerLive. Love. Read

Pick up the rest of the series!
Dragon's FutureDragon's HeirDragon's Revenge / Dragon’s Cure / Dragon’s Posterity / Dragon’s Heritage

Q4U: What aspects of world-building do you most enjoy experiencing in books? What aspects do you find most fun to develop? Most challenging?

2 comments:

  1. So many things to consider - which is why it is so much fun to create new worlds! I love putting a character into an unfamiliar environment in some way :) Description for me is by far the most challenging but I'm working on it!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It is fun! And I'll try to do some posts on description this year, Jemi. I enjoy it; figuring out HOW I do it--that will be the challenging thing for me. :-)

      Delete