Tag: Names

Worldbuilding Wednesday 1/15/20: Martial Arts Movies

Martial arts movies (kung fu in Hong Kong, wu xia pian in Mandarin) burst onto the international scene in the 1960s and early 1970s with the rise of charismatic actor Bruce Lee (he’s at the center of the pic above wielding nunchucks.) If you were not alive at the time, it’s hard to understand the …

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Worldbuilding Wednesday 1/8/20: Nail Polish Colors

Cutex introduced the first commercial nail polish in 1916.  Amazingly, the formula was derived from nitrocellulose, a chemical used in automotive paint, another new innovation of the time. Before this, people made do with henna, or concoctions of wax, egg whites, and gelatine. No longer! A new kind of beauty salon was born, and a …

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Worldbuilding Wednesday 1/1/20: Video Games

The names of modern video games share a certain something. They are vague enough to serve any kind of content, yet intriguing enough to pique one’s attention. They are abstract, yet speak of journeys and quests, battles, danger. They are mostly male and refer to male myths and archetypes. I present a list of randomly …

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Worldbuilding Wednesday 12/11/19: Christmas Scents

This time of year holiday scents abound. There’s the usual Pine and Balsam, Gingerbread, and Sugar Cookie. But to really move sweet-smelling merchandise, novelty is required. Yankee Candles has one scent I like in particular called After Sledding. The name is memorable and brings up memories of playing in the snow, while the smell is …

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Worldbuilding Wednesday 12/4/19: Birth Signs

One of the perks of worldbuilding is creating a zodiac, or set of birth signs, for your particular setting. The Western Zodiac* is the most familiar model and is named for the path the sun, moon, and planets take through the constellations on their journey through the sky. The constellation the sun is in when …

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Worldbuilding Wednesday 11/27/19: Let’s Talk About
xxxxAphrodite

In Greek mythology Aphrodite was the goddess of love, but she had a surprisingly macabre beginning. Legend says she was born of the sea-spume cast up on shore after the Greek god Cronus cut off his father Uranus’s genitals and tossed them into the waves. Also strangely for a goddess of love, her own lovers …

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Worldbuilding Wednesday 11/13/19: Steampunk Characters

Steampunk as a genre got its start with The Difference Engine and The Diamond Age, both set in a alternate world Victorian England. So, it bears to follow that Steampunk characters have English language names that were popular during that time. There are no hippy names like Rainbow or Phoenix in Steampunkland, and neither are …

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Worldbuilding Wednesday 11/6/19: Pumpkin Cuisine

In the past few years, the American consumer knows that Autumn is here by the number of pumpkin-flavored food items that become available. Starbucks has led the charge with its pumpkin-flavored lattes and now (delicious, trust me) pumpkin frappucinos. There are also pumpkin doughnuts, pumpkin cereal, and pumpkin M&Ms.  But all this obscures the true …

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Worldbuilding Wednesday 10/30/19: Witches!

Witches are a staple of fantasy and horror fiction. In their broad definition, they mean any kind of magic-using female. But for this list I’m going to use a more narrow definition: the Halloween type of witch, evil, cackling, out to do no good. The kind that brews potions in a big black cauldron and …

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Worldbuilding Wednesday 10/23/19: Torture Devices

Medieval England came up with more than its share of punishment devices. Take the Pear of Anguish pictured above. It’s a speculum, basically, with an extendable pointy thing in the middle which may or may not have been spring-shot. It was inserted in any of the victim’s orifices and splayed them open. The spike then …

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