Whats the first thing to do?

Galido

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I'm writing a story. Fantasy off course. But when i begin to write, i have created a little world with names and cities. Is it important that you have a world all ready worked out with mountains, sea's, rivers, trees... or can you do that also when you write and discoverd new places?
 

JNK

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IMHO world comes as the story goes.... usually... But as a kid I loved making maps, so at that time it was first world, then story. In general, I guess you can start with anything... Like we did in our shorth story contest: there magic system was the starting point...
 
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Galido

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I like it also. The difficilt part was searching names :) That i hate every time when i came to introduice a character or place. In the begining you find easly names, but after that, its darkness in my head :)
 
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Galido

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I have the problem with: a name for example a river you can it also used for a person :) So, i think then. Is it a great name? No? Its a river you diescribed ones ;)
 
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Galido

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If you have a naturelle landscape like the earth, its logic that there are rivers ;) If you want take time for creating 25 rivers for ex, just must give them all a name ;) But, i have not lots of rivers ;) but lots of cities and countrys and a lot of houses :)
 

JIM

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i don't think a detailed map is necessary to start, but it helps having a general idea wher things lie
 

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All writers are certainly very different and many stories don't need a fully developed world set to make a start on the actual story. That said I think its important to always keep writing world building notes as you write the story itself, and to also keep track of the kind of world that you are building. The last thing you want is to get lost in your own world or mix up your own references.

Also I often feel that a world feels more complete if subtle hints or comments are made earlier in the story which related to events and places which appear more critically later in the book. It helps to bind things together rather than having the author always getting that feeling in the back of their mind, that the author is only creating the world as he goes along and adds in new thing as they are needed.


When it comes to names and languages that is often a tricky area, however one way to cheat your way around this is to base your world upon a specific region and time span of the real world. This lets you pluck out place names and character names from a real world source and means that they will hold relationships with each other which have a realistic feeling; as opposed to feeling like things are randomly being invented without much structure.

Of course you can also go more intensive and construct your own world with its own naming rules and define your own names. This will require more work and its more world building work that the readers often won't ever see, but it can certainly work very well for providing a rich and detailed world.
 

S.J. Faerlind

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I second what Greybeard said: every writer is different and does things differently. There`s two main groups writers fall into: outliners and discovery writers. Outliners plot everything out a head of time: background, characters, plotline, geography etc. where discovery writers figure everything out as they go along. There are some who do a combination of that: plotting some things out and then discovering the rest. There`s a really fantastic series of free lectures by one of my favourite authors on creative writing posted here: http://writeaboutdragons.com/ if you want to check it out. :)
 
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Galido

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Thank you for the link ;) And i know the writer! Cool man. What have i done for beginning my story. Little question, is it story or novel? I have creating a world, i think to big :s, and created lands with their capital. Then, where the story begins, i created landscapes with names. When this is done, i begin writing. A prologue. When writing, off course, i speak off other places. Then a go to my map and think: Good, you wanne write about a new city, where can you put it? And then i think: is it in the mountains or forest? You need lots of time for creating a new world, but its exciting :)
 

c_nebbia

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I can tell you what my experience is. Maybe because I'm an engineer, I tend to proceed by steps and always to be very consistent.
So, after writing, say, the first twenty pages of my first book, as soon as the main character left his home I felt the urge to sketch a map of the world where he was living, to become later "Norrland and the Seven Lands".
So I drew mountains, rivers, hills placing towns, mines, ports and fortresses.
This in turn defined the behaviour of the peoples who inhabited the Seven Lands. People living in a region surrounded by mountains were closed, fierce and warriorlike, while the ones living in marshes close to the sea were fishermen and traders and so on and so forth.
Eothian, the main charachter, was the son of a lesser lord, living in a keep controllin a gorge wher the road to the sea nad the river engulfed themselves, a key strategic position that sealed his family fate.
The more I worked to the map, the more I found myself becoming part of that world and the more inspiration I got.
This is my story, I can't pretend is a recipe good for everyone.
By the way, there is no one forbidding you to add in future a new portion of the world.
 

Moonlance

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I'm writing a story. Fantasy off course. But when i begin to write, i have created a little world with names and cities. Is it important that you have a world all ready worked out with mountains, sea's, rivers, trees... or can you do that also when you write and discoverd new places?

As S.J. Faerlind described, both methods are usable; and also is the combination of them two.

However, there is a contemporary collection book published from Robert Louis Stevenson's supposedly little known litterary critics texts, called "Essays in the art of writing", or "Essais sur l'art de la fiction", where he himself explains logically how important it is for an author of fiction stories to know profoundly well about the world he is working on (let's say, the treasure island area itself); how much time does it takes, by feet, from this spot to this in the crafted map? And all such sort of technical questions, are put emphazised by this intellectual master, in one of his essays in that book. I strongly suggest you read it. Good luck. :D
 
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Galido

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Ok, first, finding the book ;) Thats all ready a quest for me :)
 
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