Chronicles in Creation

Are you writing a book? Do you ever read the ‘How To’ guides on the internet and feel disheartened that everyone else seems to know what they are doing and here’s you with no clue?

Please say it’s not just me.

Well, if you are sitting there thinking that you are alone in a sea of possible choices and no idea what to choose, then hopefully this series will help!

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Chronicles in Creation is an on-going blog-series charting my efforts in thoroughly building a fantasy world for my (very much in-progress) novel Warden of the Border. It is intended to be a real-time record of the trials and tribulations which inevitably come out of building a whole new world of one’s own.

Chapter 1 – In Which We Are Introduced – Because it is noted that this series is not a ‘How to’

Chapter 2 – World-Building and Why It Really Does Matter – Setting; the neglected third child of the Narrative Holy Trinity, and why we should love it more

Chapter 3 – Why Setting and Scenery Are Not Synonymous – Because your world-building needs to do more than sit there and look pretty or no one cares, ok?

Chapter 4 – Building Rules and Breaking Them – Reality is found in Rules, and we won’t care without them.

Chapter 5 – The Power of Names – Because Names have always had power, for the wise who know how to use it…

Chapter 6 – Why Even The Villains Should Have Rules… – The fine line between the Known and the Unknown to terrify your readers

Chapter 7 – How To Build Your Fairy City (Or; What Your Building Says About You) – Updated with images (29/01/18) – People shape Buildings, but Buildings shape People back.

Chapter 8 – In Defence of Doing Nothing – Because there’s nothing wrong with thinking something through before you throw yourself in!

Chapter 9 – Fantasy Idioms: A Shortcut to Writing a New Language – That’s the Elf and the Dwarf of it…

Chapter 10 – Worlds Within Worlds: Standing on the Shoulders of Giants – Finding inspiration in the wisdom we’ve received

Chapter 11 – Shadows in the Mist… – Characters, and why they need to be better defined than Will O’Wisps!

Chapter 12 – Compelling Characters – A Very Potter Case Study.     Part 1    Part 2          Ever heard of Harry Potter, Ron Weasley and Hermione Granger? That’s what I thought! But why are they so memorable, and how do they work so well?

Chapter 13 – Uncharted Territory – Updated with more maps (29/01/18) – Drawing maps for those of us without artistic talent…

Chapter 14 – Making Men of Myths.    Part 1    Part 2    Part 3    – So you want to write Mythological Characters? Here’s how I made mine…

Forty Days and Forty Nights – The beginning of a Lenten celebration through Redemption Arcs

Chapter 15 – Susan Pevensie: The Redemption Arc That Never Happened – The surprising and uncomfortable lessons on life that can be taught simply by not giving people what they expect  Part 1 Part 2

Chapter 16 – Why We’re Sailing Without Our Moral CompassBecause You Must Never Trust Writers… Ever.

Chapter 17 – 5 Basic Rules for Building Your Own Moral SystemDoes your story have people in it? You probably have a moral code. Here’s 5 things you might want to think about.

Chapter 18 – Balancing the Books – Building Redemption through Narrative Structure

Chapter 19 – The Tragedy of Backstory.   Part 1    Part 2  – With Backstory, less tends to be more, and what on earth do you do with it once you have it? Well…

Chapter 20 – The Magic That Walks Among Us – Ever wondered what would really happen when a city had a curse placed upon it? Well, in this post we take a look at Carlisle where this was a legitimate question

Chapter 21 – Hide and Seek (The MacGuffin Edition) – When you need to hide the Magic Thingy, but you don’t know where? Well, here we have a few suggestions…

Chapter 22 – So You Want To Draw A Map SeriesBecause we fantasy writers (and readers!) do so love our maps, and it’s worth talking about why…

Prologue – Uncharted Territory – In which I try out drawing for the first time in forever, and recommend things that I found helpful.

Part 2 – Map Effect Sooo… Why are we drawing this again? Taking a look at Narnia, Westeros, Middle Earth and more!

Part 3 – A Kingdom for the Oak King – Tackling the hard parts first and working with Scotch Mist

Part 4 – No Map is An Island – Sometimes all you can do is keep drawing until you get it right…

Chapter 23 – Plotting! (For Non-Super Villains)

Part 1 –In which there are many ways to plan out your novel, but why bother taking all that time?

Part 2 – Sharing personal tips and tricks for successfully plotting out a story; finding the weak points and tracking narrative tension.

Chapter 24 – The Magic That Walks Among Us – Part 2 – Lloyds of London, Scottish Natural Heritage and the Loch Ness Monster…

Chapter 25 – Before you ‘Rewrite’ the Old Stories, Maybe Think About What They Were Saying… – Because so many modern retellings focus on the small stuff and just keep on missing the point…