Category: Writing

Worldbuilding Wednesday 10/17/18: Let’s Talk About
Salt Lake City

Salt Lake City is a city with a most illustrious pedigree, having been settled by religious visionaries like many of the original towns of America’s East Coast. It was named in the Western tradition of naming towns after prominent landscape features, like Butte, Montana and Boulder, Colorado. Yet it also has a certain ring. The …

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Worldbuilding Wednesday 10/10/18: Elements

Unique and rare elements are a staple of worldbuilding when writing SF. Star Trek has its dilithium, Black Panther’s Wakanda vibranium, and the moon of Pandora, unobtainium. These elements serve as a means to explain a technology that does not exist, or serve as a McGuffin for conflict. Looking for a new element? Here’s a …

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Worldbuilding Wednesday 10/3/18: Gaulish Tribes

If you’re from Western Europe, you will know who these characters are. If you aren’t, know that they are Asterix the plucky Gaul, his big pal Obelix, and their pet dog Dogmatix, creations of French comic writer and artist René Goscinny and Albert Uderzo. They are the equivalent of Mickey Mouse and Donald Duck in …

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Worldbuilding Wednesday 9/26/18: Individual Dragons IV

One of the things I’ve noticed about following the AD&D universe from puberty through menopause is how the quality of the artwork has changed. The original creators of the game were geeks, not artists. Whatever art skills they had were self-taught, probably over many lonely hours. The game needed visuals for its players, being at …

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Worldbuilding Wednesday 9/19/18: Individual Dragons III

The earliest edition of  Dungeons and Dragons released in the late 1970s listed only ten different types of dragons for adventurers to test themselves against. The good-aligned ones were Metallic: Copper, Brass, Bronze, Silver, and Gold, while the evil ones were Chromatic and named after colors: Black, White, Blue, Red, and Green. Each type had …

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Worldbuilding Wednesday 9/12/18: Individual Dragons II

In the fantasy world, you can pretty much combine any any other animal into a creature and still call it a dragon. Dragon turtles are the terrors of AD&D maritime kingdoms. A Chinese dragon/lhasa apso hybrid featured strongly in The NeverEnding Story movie. And as I’ll continue to do on my site for September, there …

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Worldbuilding Wednesday 9/5/18: Individual Dragons I

One thing that can be said of the dragon sketch above, he certainly has personality! See more versions of Smaug here. Here’s something different in the worldbuilding department, a selection of randomgen* dragons for writing or gaming use, generated from lists of different characteristics like color, size, and type of treasure horde. A few random …

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Worldbuilding Wednesday 8/29/18: Kajira

Kajira is the term used for the eternally youthful, eternally hapless, eternally helpless slave girls found in John Norman’s Gor series. Gor, for those not in the know, is a Conanesque  planet superficially similar to Earth and sharing the same orbit, but on the opposite side of the sun so it remains undiscovered.  The first …

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Worldbuilding Wednesday 8/22/18: Perfumes

The making of perfume is almost as old as human agriculture. A perfume-making operation dating to around 4000 BCE was unearthed on the island of Cyprus in 2005, which is when humans were still in the Bronze Age. The Indus Valley civilization produced perfumes a few hundred years later, and Babylon in 1200 BCE. It …

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Worldbuilding Wednesday 8/15/18: A Few Noble Families

Here’s something a little different, a set of randomly generated noble families (with a little tweaking) for use in a roleplaying game or as story background. I find that when these disparate elements are put together, the story or adventure may practically write itself. What would happen, for example, if Vylen Lemugia returns home and …

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