Saturday, October 31, 2009

World Building

I am in the thick of revising my second novel, but thoughts about my new one are creeping in anyway, and they are of a world I have not previously even considered: underwater.

Yes, I've seen Splash!, and I've adored Disney's The Little Mermaid for years. But Splash! wasn't about the underwater world, just about the mermaid's adaptation to land. Even at the end, when Tom Hanks follows her back into the sea, we don't really see the world they go to. And The Little Mermaid was far more concerned with the merpeople's distrust of humans because they eat fish, or a girl's desire to break the rules--oh, and the way Ariel's hair twirled around in the water (visually spectacular, but not something that will transfer well to a novel format). None of this will really speak to what I hope to write.

Uncharted territory. I like it. Even better, it's uncharted territory with rules, like writing a sonnet, for I have to obey the rules of undersea life at least to an extent so that nothing sticks out as stupid. 

It also means I can't just throw myself into writing. I need to figure out setting, create the lifestyle, and decide what rules I need, what rules I can break, and how everything is going to fit together. I need to do quite a bit of world building. 

I'm getting giddy just thinking about it! 


  1. you're right it is an untapped area.

    the best part is your finding an area of writing that inspires you. this way your story will jump off the page and fill the reader with wonder. the story is always better when your ecited about it and the story comes to life right before your eyes...


  2. I love world building, except I like having the pieces of world fall into place for the reader, often at odd moments, letting them thing the world is all X only to find out it was Y all the time.

    I'm evil that way.

    Rules are important, though, in world building and I often have different rules for everything I write. Since Lee's such a magic afficionado, he's often imposed rules I didn't realize existed which can irk me, but, so far, we've worked it all out. I do the same thing for physics.

  3. It is your world, if you have the words you can make the rules.

    "Them rules is for someone else, we make up our own rules as we go along."
    Mr. Rose in Cider House Rules.

  4. Well, finish the current one first. :)

    Whenever you writers find a new love, you just dump the old one...

  5. You are right, Relax Max. I need to finish. But I can also let the dreams come and develop this new one while that happens.

    Off to work! Much to do!

  6. Your new story sounds like lots of fun! I know you have the old one to finish, but sometimes you've got to run with something when it's hot on your fingers!
    Don't worry too much about the world building.. after all, it's YOUR world. :)
    Thank you for your encouraging words on my blog.