Category: Writing – Worldbuilding

Worldbuilding Wednesday 9/9/20: Narnia XV

One of the questions I always wanted answered about Narnia-the-world is that of other civilizations. Sure, we had Narnia; then Telmar, dull and problematic as it was, and Archenland in Prince Caspian; in the next book Galma, Terabinthia, Calormen, and the Seven Isles came along, then Ettinsmoor and the Underworld in The Silver Chair. But …

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Worldbuilding Wednesday
8/26/20: Narnia XIII (Let’s
xxxxTalk About Charn)

Charn vies with Tashbaan as my favorite Narnian fantasy setting. Not that I’d want to live there, of course. It’s dead, dry, and spooky. But Charn in its prime… well! It must have been something to see. One of the reasons it’s so evocative is the name. It’s short and blunt, like a location of …

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Worldbuilding Wednesday
8/19/20: Narnia XII

The Magician’s Nephew ranks third (tied with The Horse and His Boy) as my Chronicles favorite for the Weird Tales awesomeness that is Charn. As I wrote in The Wild Lands of the North, Lewis was more than a little influenced by the pulps (and the pulps influenced by Lord Dunsany and E. R. Eddison, …

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Worldbuilding Wednesday
8/12/20: Narnia XI

The Horse and His Boy ties for my third favorite of the Chronicles with The Magician’s Nephew. Perhaps Nephew has the edge, because of the awesomeness of Charn, the Wood Between the Worlds, and  Aslan’s Garden. But Horse has Tashbaan and the desert. It’s a close call. The flavor is different from the rest of …

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Calormen and the South

Other posts in this series: The Odd Geography of the Utter East The Wild Lands of the North When speaking of Narnia, the name can mean both the country, and the world. Narnia-the-country’s boundaries are straightforward. This is a Baynes map from Prince Caspian. North: That line of hills that has a V-shape at the …

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The Wild Lands of the North
(and a bit about Giants)

Let’s continue to explore Narnia’s four corners by moving from the Utter East to the Wild Lands of the North. The north has always been a wild, untamed place in Lewis’s mythos. In The Lion the Witch and the Wardrobe, giants live there, which High King Peter battles as part of his royal duties. In …

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The Odd Geography of the Utter East

Of all the places in Narnia, I’m most fascinated by the Utter East, that area of Narnia-the-World that lies over the Eastern Sea. It’s one of the most transcendent of Lewis’s creations – full of so much rich, mystical bizarreness that those passages remain one of my favorite pieces of writing, any writing, to this …

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Worldbuilding Wednesday
8/5/20: Narnia X

The 1970 version  and a more recent one (right) The Silver Chair is my favorite Narnia book. The protagonists travel across and into many worlds — the mountains of Aslan’s country, the swamp of the marsh-wiggles, the bleak moors and the bleaker ruins of the giants; then the cavernous underworld and the subterranean city of …

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Worldbuilding Wednesday
7/29/20: Narnia IX (Let’s Talk
xxxxAboutTelmar)

  In last weeks’ Worldbuilding Wednesday I took a look at the etymology of Prunaprismia and how other women of Telmar might have been named. This week, I’ll look at the men. I think Lewis designed his names with French and Spanish in mind. The pronunciation of them, glottal and oily, recalls spoken Italian as …

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Worldbuilding Wednesday
7/22/20: Narnia VIII (Let’s Talk
xxxxAbout Queen Prunaprismia)

One of the most oddly named characters in the whole of Narnia is Queen Prunaprismia, the wife of King Miraz. In Prince Caspian Miraz murders his brother, Caspian’s father, and usurps the kingdom, but keeps Caspian as his heir because he has no progeny of his own. But when his wife Prunaprismia becomes pregnant, Caspian …

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