Worldbuilding Overview

Now that I’m getting back into writing worldbuilding posts, I’ve been thinking about the direction I’ll be taking them.  There are a lot of topics to cover, and I’ve only barely scratched the surface of the topic.  It’s a very complex task.  Creating a world isn’t a simple thing.

Here is what I’ve already done:

  • Choosing a Star – What kind of star is best for life? I go through the spectral types and which would be most suitable.
  • The Planet – I go into a lot of detail about creating a planet that could be habitable.  Plenty of science here.
  • Mapmaking – I discuss how to create the world map.  This is a general overview of physical maps.
  • Climate and Weather – Here we take a look at various climate types and the kind of environments they create.

As you can see, it’s been pretty scientific so far.  Things are about to change, though.  I’ll be going into topics related to humanity, including culture, food, religion, language, and so on.  I’ll also step back into science and discuss the native life.  Here’s a general idea of what I’ll be writing about in upcoming posts.

  • Countries – This is a continuation of mapmaking. I’ll be discussing where you put the borders, especially if you want it to be realistic.  This is a general overview, though.
  • Cities, Towns, and Other Settlements – I’ll discuss where to place cities and towns.
  • Political Subdivisions – Countries are often broken down into states, provinces, counties, and so on.  I’ll talk about them here.
  • Plants – I’ll go into how to create plants for your world.
  • Animals – Similar to the plants topic, but based on animals.  How do you create animals?  This will likely be quite in-depth.
  • Other Life – This will involve microbes and other possible life.
  • Culture – This will be a general overview of the culture topic, which is extensive.
  • Food – Looking at food from both a cultural point of view as well as for survival.
  • Religion – I’ll go over religion types and how they affect cultures.
  • Language – I’ll discuss the creation of languages and how they can evolve and link different cultures.
  • Traditions – This is likely to involve food, religion, and history.  I’ll discuss various aspects of traditions, including holidays, rituals, and other events.
  • Clothing – I’ll discuss what you can do to create clothing for your cultures.
  • History – This is a very complex topic, as is culture.  There are various aspects I’d like to go into further, but I’ll talk about it generally first.
  • Government – I’ll talk about the different government types and how you can choose them for your countries.
  • War – This has a major impact on a world’s history, as well as governments, traditions, religion, and culture.  It can change the map, too.
  • Natural Disasters – History can change because of the world itself.  I’ll talk about various natural disasters here.
  • Technology – From the most basic to the advanced, I’ll go over how you can create new technologies and have them evolve over time.
  • Notable People – There will always be famous and important people in history. I’ll discuss that here.
  • Magic – This is especially for fantasy.  I’ll talk about that here.
  • Races – This is for both fantasy and science fiction.  In the case of science fiction, I’ll discuss alien species.
  • City Design – I’ll be going through how to design a city and make it realistic, and why it’s important to know the layout for your novel.
  • Industry – I’ll talk about industries, and what’s appropriate for various levels of technology.
  • Architecture – This can involve technology, industry, and culture.  How can you design a building?

That looks like a lot, and it definitely will be a lot of work.  This is not a complete list, though.  And I won’t necessarily do it in this order.

If you have any suggestions about worldbuilding topics, I’d love to hear about it.  Please leave a comment below.

11 thoughts on “Worldbuilding Overview”

  1. Will it be an “earth-like” planet? Or will the be things in this world that don’t exist on Earth? How about weather/climate regions? Resources (natural or otherwise)? It rains diamonds (converted from methane) on Neptune (fun fact, side note 🙂

    1. Well, the first is already answered in the first two posts. The second question can be addressed in a variety of future posts, I think. The third was done in the third post I did. Resources is a good one. I’ll need to do that, and I think I’ll touch on that with the city post 🙂

  2. This is an informative post. I had no idea I needed to do so much work to build my world! I guess I should have, but I didn’t think about it. Thank you for bringing this to my attention! I will be doing some of this work and bringing the weather and things into the story (at least in the background…).

    1. It can be a lot of work, but I’m just writing these as general guidelines for anyone who is having trouble with world creation. You’re welcome to use as much or as little as you like 🙂

  3. I don’t think I could make a list like that and separate all the various aspects of worldbuilding into individual components — I’m too inclined to focus on how they interact with each other. For example, climate influences clothing not only in what kinds of clothes are needed to stay warm or cool or dry, but what kinds of plants or animals are available to make clothing FROM: if the climate is bad for silkworms, you won’t see people wearing silk unless they can import it… which is where clothing is affected by commerce and technology, etc. Or a natural disaster sets off a war because it affected food production, and one country invades its neighbor to gain more/better cropland (or access to land where they can grow mulberry trees, because silk from oak-fed silkworms is rather coarse and lumpy).

    This is all fascinating stuff. I look forward to reading what you have to say about it.

    1. Oh absolutely. All of these steps should be done in conjunction with other aspects. I mention that in the posts, especially today’s about creating countries. There’s so much that goes into it, and I say that, but if you want to do it simply, just draw the borders.

      Anyway, I just posted the newest part.

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