A lot of people are trying to write more diverse worlds, but a lot of people are also perfectionists who need to know every detail and reason in their world. Here are some ways and explanations for creating a diverse world. This is geared toward pre-industrial and early industrial societies.
Trade: Trade can do wonders. Trade is how your characters get rare fabrics, different foods, knowledge of other cultures, knowledge of other languages, cultural diffusion, and more. Trade can occur over land or over water. You can get characters to travel halfway around the world. You can have trade posts near major cities. Groups of traders who travel over land can go through cities, towns, and tiny villages. Entire cultures can be centered around trade and they can have influence on many parts of your world.
Exile: This can make for some interesting stories for characters. Using exile can put entire families or even whole groups of people (ethnic groups, religious groups, a village, etc.) in faraway lands where they’ll probably stay for a long time. Means of exile can vary. They might have been banished from their land or a natural disaster could have forced them to move.
Hiding: Like exile, you can uproot characters and place them in another place while also coming up with an interesting back story for why they are hiding. This can also reveal a bit about your world. If there are several people in hiding from one particular place, what does that say about the relationship between these two places or these places themselves (i.e., corruptness, law, freedom, etc.)?
Politics: Political rulers are not confined to their homes. They can travel to other nations for political or personal reasons. They might need to discuss political matters with another ruler or they might be guests at a party. There are also political marriages or children of political leaders who live elsewhere as a ward.
War: War, past or present, can bring people to your setting. Some people might be refugees, some might be descendants of prisoners of war, and some might be allies. Or, a past war could have acquired more land and the people who were there, making them citizens of the new nation post-war (depending on the rules of citizenship). Whether they’re citizens or not, they’re still in the same nation and it’s likely some will travel to major cities or elsewhere within the nation’s borders. There can also be forts and camps for a military of another nation.
Education: Does your setting have some type of prestigious school? If schools are few, ones like these can attract the rich, powerful, and/or connected from several surrounding areas. Even if there are several schools a prestigious one can still attract many people.
Religion: Some religions have a goal of spreading their beliefs, so you can bring that into your world. Other times, if there is something of religious significance in your setting, religious people may travel there on a regular basis. Those who spread religion might travel on similar routes of traders (or they might be the traders) to talk about their religion. Or there might be places where religious leaders gather and live.
Exploration: You can get some explorers, or even just wandering travelers, to go to faraway places in search of resources, people, enlightenment, religion, important objects, and more. Another option would be researchers.
Festivals and Ceremonies: These can be tied to religion, history, politics, and many other things. Large celebrations can bring tons of people to one place, whether it’s in a city or not. If you’ve got something like this in your story, take advantage of it to introduce new people and cultures.
When you’re trying to write dialogue, remember that each character will have his/her own motivations and will likely have different end goals for the way they want a conversation to go. This is true whether your characters are strategizing a plan to take down the Evil…
Naming is incredibly subjective, and incredibly tough. Names are usually the first things we see about someone or something. It’s often the first impression we get, and the impact of a name can be important in a story. Sometimes, names mean something….
We’ve all been victims to it: Procrastination. It gets worse during weekends and long breaks. When deadlines are our own or don’t exist at all, when inspiration has run out, or when our interest is elsewhere, it strikes. As the summer nears an end, I look back on all my…
Note: Stories, facts, and information provided here are not meant as encouragements for writers to simply insert into their works. Additional research may be needed. They should only be used as inspiration and to help with understanding how cultures are put together. Please…
I wanted to double check that “The Cherry on Top” was a short novel or novella and I found this on uphillwriting.org. I think it’s very informative and hopefully you guys will find it useful!
Good friends, this list is wonderful, but it’s missing something!
800 words maximum
The basics of eye shapes for writers.
How It’s Said (substitutes)
In a happy way: laughed, rejoiced, giggled, joked, lilted, sang out.
In a sad way: cried, agonised, bawled, blubbered, lamented, sobbed, groaned, snivelled, wept, mourned.
In a bossy way: insisted, bossed, demanded, preached, dictated, professed, ordered.
In an angry way: raged, miffed, seethed, fumed, retorted, thundered, blurted.
In a pained way: barked, cried out, cried, screamed, jabbered, bellowed, groaned, howled, shrieked, roared, grieved, wailed, yelped.
In a frightened way: quaked, stammered, shuddered, quivered, trembled.
In an understanding way: empathised, accepted, consoled, crooned, comforted, sympathised, agreed.
In a tired way: mumbled, struggled, emitted, wearied.
In a begging way: beseeched, begged, implored, pleaded, entreated, appealed to.
In a mocking way: mocked, ridiculed, derided, hooted, japed, insulted, jeered, parodied, taunted, teased, chaffed, flouted, degraded, sneered, disdained, jibed, gibed, disparaged, belittled, decried, flouted, fleered, leered, scoffed, sniggered, swiped, scorned, repudiated, lampooned.
In a seductive way: purred, simpered, coaxed, wheedled, persuaded, baited.
As an answer: As an answer: responded, retorted, replied, rejoined, answered, acknowledged.