Here’s the last look at my plans for 2019 and I left this topic for last because it’s the one that’s haunted me for years and while I’ve made small strides at tackling the beast, I haven’t yet made significant gains.
For fantasy writers, keeping detailed records on world building is crucial. When I did my initial world building my records were second to none, but then three things happened almost simultaneously. First, I became almost-died sick for years. Second, the world continued to evolve while I fell behind in tracking it all. Third, my records were written in a program that became lost to me so I ended up with only the hard copies of my work (thank you, Microsoft!).
Thus, with my recovery requiring years, the stagnant records needing rewritten slowly evolved into a momentous task I didn’t want to face. For a long while the best I managed was to scribble notes on the page margins.
As if to make certain the momentous task was even bigger, I started world building for Pannulus last year. Given it’s the same world, the laws of magic are identical, but the culture and history differ.
I’ve made some successful inroads. The documents pertaining to the operation of magic, ora’ean language, and Partials (those with specialized gifts) are updated and rewritten. Even so, in Carrdia where there are five kinds of Partials, but in Pannulus they’re called zycons and there are seven kinds. That’s because the mysquanmic (magic) vortex there accelerated the evolution of magic a tad.
My big world building success has been the maps (more on this later), a project that began with reimagining the continent of Tremjara in 2015.
At least I haven’t been idle on new world building. There are papers written papers on witchcraft operation and culture, neander culture, and yettle culture. Too, my short stories in Pannulus jumpstarted my work there.
There are three areas that are most out of date. The big one is the history. The written and rewritten and rewritten (all on the same pages) histories of the Old Empire and Carrdia are virtual textbooks. Much smaller tasks needing reworked are the glossary and character database for quick reference.
Ah, the character database…
When my initial records were created when there was one novel (long since discarded), but now there are seven in two countries.
Here’s another perspective. Stealing Light, which is the lone Pannulus novel, has six short stories of about 10K each that are tied to it. When I combined all those character lists, eliminated the duplicated characters, and counted what remained there were 69 named characters. I’m currently rewriting Stealing Light so there’s a good chance several more minor characters will be added.
The glossary exists, if fragments scattered everywhere can be said to be a whole. I need to consolidate and rewrite the entire thing. There are words that I’ve discarded because concepts changed.
I’ve made several aborted attempts at rewriting the history, but I keep sabotaging myself by making it more difficult than it needs to be, reaching for more detail than is necessary.
Okay, here we go…
To start, I’ll overhaul my process, simplifying it as much as possible, and will devote at least one hour per day to the project (like I have with the maps since 2015). If I do that and start seeing real progress, it’ll take off.
Thankfully, I can turn my attention to the databases because last year I finished the Tremjara and Carrdia maps. I created a Pannulus map, but it was a mess and I’ve been working to fix it.
It’s fixed! The new and improved Pannulus map with its cleaner look and more details will be the topic for next week. I hope to see you then.