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The Art of World Making

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Shared World [13 Jul 2011|03:49pm]

I'm looking to start a shared world group, maybe 5 to 8 people that can create a world, creatures, magic, history, etc. The world could be used for gaming or novels.

Post here or email me at magicalbookworm@gmx.com
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I got it! [02 Jan 2011|11:24pm]

I think I have a beginning to my story that works out. Well, the very very beginning is fine, but getting that to mesh with modern reality was a pain. Getting furries wasn't hard, getting the cool stuff wasn't hard, I'm still working on space travel, but getting everything to work together was still lacking. But I think I have it.

IT BEGINS...Collapse )
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Calendars [29 Sep 2010|01:01pm]

How many of you have come up with calendars for your cultures?

Do you base them on a 365.25 day year? Or do you invent your own astronomy to come up with different days?

Is is lunar? Solar? Both?

Do you have weeks? How long are they?

How many months?

How many seasons are there?

I just finished designing a calendar for one of my concultures. I have it set in an alternate solar system where there are 309.33 days in a year.

There is no moon, so months never evolved. There are 8 seasons instead, of 37 or 39 days each, depending on which part of the elliptical orbit the planet is. There are waxing seasons and waning seasons centered around either the equinoxes or the solstices. They do not count as falling in a season; they only mark the divisions, and they function as festival days. There is aslo a New Year's Day and (every three years) a Leap Day.

This totals up to 309 or 310 days a year. The date is given as days away from the nearest holiday, such as, it is the 31st day until solstice, or the 12th day since equinox.

They have weeks of 10 days each, and they rest on the 1st and 6th of each week. They skip a day of the week if there is no Leap Day that year, such that there are exactly 31 weeks in a year and holidays always fall on the same day of the week.

Anyhow, what about the rest of you? How much detail do you have?

x-posted to conculture and worldbuilding
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Conculture site [20 May 2009|03:49am]

[ mood | curious ]


I recently created a website for all of my conlangs and concultures. It is fleshed out to a reasonable degree, but there is a lot to be added. I'll also be adding more to the existing sections and pages.

The lack of pictures has been mentioned before, and I do intend to have some, but I'm currently without a scanner, and I don't know many graphic artists online, so the image aspect will have to wait for now.

I'm actively seeking comments/suggestions on all aspects of the site and its content, especially the technical elements of the linguistics, since I'm a perfectionist when it comes to that.


Any suggestions/criticism/questions/comments, etc. are appreciated.


(x-posted to worldbuilding and conlangs)

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Urbis - A World of Cities [07 May 2009|03:25pm]

The old-timers here might remember - I've talked about this setting in this community more than four years ago. Nevertheless, I'd like to mention it again - the setting has expanded significantly since them, and it has moved to a new site as well.

Urbis - A World of Cities started out when I asked myself what a fantasy with magic as potent as that of D&D would really look like. After all, magic items, area effect spells, healing magic, and the power to raise the dead will likely change a society more than just give adventurers some stat bonuses. Eventually I ended up with a world that once was a stereotypical pseudo-medieval fantasy world, but which is now undergoing a magical industrial revolution and rapidly growing cities.

The setting is truly vast - I've written more than 150,000 words for it - and accordingly hard to sum up. But good starting points are the entry for the city of Dartmouth, which I have detailed with the intention of presenting a ready-made "home base" for player characters, and the entry for nexus towers - the invention that made the setting possible.

Take a look, and tell me how you like it. If there is interest, I can go a bit more into details in future posts.
7 comments|post comment

1877 Update [03 May 2009|10:42pm]

[ mood | calm ]

So I was going to keep this under wraps and surprise everyone, but I couldn't help but show my progress. Also I do have some the background/political issues ironed out and I will go into more detail once this is done.

I've come a long way since my rough draft. http://community.livejournal.com/worldmaking/78299.html

2 comments|post comment

Alternate World Building Idea? [30 Apr 2009|02:15am]

[ mood | complacent ]

Hello everyone!

Well I'm no sure this is the place to ask this but I've been trying to find somewhere where to discuss this.

One idea for a story is based around an alternate version of our world in the year 1877. There are various differences but the biggest is that I'm going to base this around a steam punk theme.

Thoughts and questions are appreciated!

I have some specific ideas but I don't want to go into detail unless its allowed. if you know of another community where this topic is more applicable let me know. :)

Also I just recently created a map of America.

18 comments|post comment

Hello! [07 Apr 2009|01:45pm]

Hello! I'd like to say hello. I just joined.

I'm excited to meet others who are into wolrd building.

Of course I am making my on world. I was wondering if there was anyone out there who could give me help on creating a history of a fantasy world. As in organizing & developing it and such. I've tried using Word to get the notes and other stuff down but I've had some difficulty in that.

Thanks for your time! :)
11 comments|post comment

Dwarves language [05 Aug 2008|03:16pm]


Hey all. I'm not sure if I've mentioned this already but I've recently started my first conlang (constructed language) which is intended to be spoken by prehistoric dwarves. At the moment the language is currently based on various natralistic languages such as English, German, and Finnish with some borrowings from specific conlangs such as Klingon. The grammar is still in-complete but that is only because the conlang is still in it's early stages of it's development. The reason why I'm posting this here is because I was wondering if you knew of any sites that provided detailed information on Khuzdul -the dwarvish language in LOtR. I've tried a few searches through google but whilst I can find plenty of information abot the dwarvish culture I've yet to find much on their language. Even just some books on the subject would be useful. I would also like some information on any other dwarvish languages from books etc that you know of; and if possible, languages that you think might provide a basis of inspiration.  

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Trains! [08 Jan 2008|02:18am]




Useful resources.

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Community Info [04 Jan 2008|02:09pm]

[ mood | curious ]

I've asked this before (more than a year ago), cannot find the question or the answers so I'll ask again as I'm returning to our shared hobby...

What is the difference between this community and worldbuilding? I'm posting this over there also so I can try to get a concensus from both sides.

Also, I'll be working on a SciFi universe. Is there a prefered community for such endevors?


7 comments|post comment

Geography invention resources? [11 Jul 2007|12:15am]

I'm considering repainting a globe so that it maps out a realistic fantasy world that I could write stories about. The modified hypothetical-world globes made by Chris Wayan are inspiring. I have a globe that I can use, and it has some advantages over a map. It would be quite a nice decoration for a fantasy novelist's desk, if ever I manage to be a fantasy novelist.

However, I don't think that I have enough knowledge about geography in the way required for this type of project. I can point to such-and-such a country on a map, and I know what tectonic plates are, yes. I know that kind of geography. I just don't think I understand in enough depth about how land-features form that I could design original and yet natural-looking ones.

Pardon me if this has been asked before on this group, since fantasy maps are one of the main topics. What resources and references do you recommend that are of particular use to people designing fantasy geography?
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D&D World Design Journal [23 Mar 2007|02:05pm]

Hi everyone, just wanted to let you all know that my D&D campaign design journal, orbis_terrarumis still going strong. Please feel free to have a peek and add to your friends list! Commentary is always welcome!
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Psuedo Languages: Goblish [01 Mar 2007|06:57am]

I call my second psuedo-language Goblish.

How to use GoblishCollapse )

x-posted to fantasy_studies
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Psuedo Languages: Gnomish [28 Feb 2007|06:43am]

The first psuedo language I made, I call Gnomish.

How to use GnomishCollapse )

x-posted to fantasy_studies
4 comments|post comment

Psuedo Languages: Introduction [27 Feb 2007|07:53pm]

Final Fantasy 9 (I think it was 9. There've been so many) included a group of characters who spoke another language. But it wasn't really another language, just English with the letters jumbled. Throughout the game, you could learn the language bit by bit, by learning which letters were substituted with what. I thought it was a cool concept. The only problem was that the resultant text didn't look like a real language and was often impossible to pronounce.

It inspired me to develope a couple similar psuedo languages. They would be constructed in basically the same way, but the substitutions would be organized in such a way as to be easilly memorised, and so that the resultant text would have the appearance of a real language, and be pronouncable. I figured they would be useful to writers, to help give the impression of a world of many languages, for example, without having to go through the hassle of developing or learning a whole languages (or several) from scratch.

I've got two so far, which I will be posting about in greater detail in the next few days. I call then Gnomish and Goblish.

x-posted to fantasy_studies
7 comments|post comment

Movin' my Worldbuilding [25 Feb 2007|04:50am]

[ mood | creative ]

Just an FYI for those of you who've been following the setting I've been posting bits of here the last few years - I'm moving the new material off LJ and onto my own webspace. This both makes me a bit more comfortable in a legal sense - I was always a bit worried about LJ sticking in a Yahooesque "all your content are belong to us" clause - and it lets me manipulate it more conveniently, especially since I decided to work on it by setting up DokuWiki (which is idiotproof and a pleasure to use so far; I heartily recommend it to anyone doing similar projects).

I'll be some weeks in getting everything shunted over, not least since I'm taking advantage of the migration to do some substantial editing in parts, and get the Tap'annu and human halves of the setting lined up chronologically in particular (which is why there's few direct references to either, aside from the human timelines - which are gonna get rewritten to include nonhuman events eventually - so far). That'll be sooner rather than later, in any case. Bearing in mind that it's a work in progress, you can see it here in all its wikiality. The categories are blatant to-do lists; the list of links both working and non- are nowhere near comprehensive yet.

I'll probably still be pointing to new writeups here as I do them, but it's not something I'll probably keep up on readily. Between copying old notes in and writing new material, it's growing by several articles a day and will be for awhile, so excuse the huge gaps where no gaps should be by now.

For those who've been following it, there's small pile of new material, and a lot of it's interlinked with other stuff, so if you're curious, have fun!

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Gods [08 Jan 2007|11:18am]

Now I am not going to start with:

"Hello... I am developing my own world with lots and lots of text which I want you to look through for hours and hours and hours..."

Now I admit to be creating my own world, but I will not unleash it upon you apart from just to say that its an atypical fantasy setting which has Gods in it.

Rather I was curious about the role of Gods in some of your worlds, or at least those worlds which actually have Gods in them. Do they meddle in mortal affairs like the Greek Gods, just affect important events, or rarely interfere? Do you use Gods from real world mythologys or have you created your own? Is there one God or many?

Also if you use existing... well not existing... real world mythological Gods do you sometimes try and interpret them differently than other settings? I have a sympathy towards some Gods like Hades (forced into isolation in the underworld) and Loki (who admit it or not actually did a lot of good things despite being the trickster) so their characters are slightly different (though based upon) to what could be deemed the stereotypes.
30 comments|post comment

New Worldbuilding Community [31 Dec 2006|11:40am]
x-posted to several communities

You are invited to join asmaida, an exercise in shared world building, with some very basic role-playing elements. We are designing a modern-day island nation to be a setting for stories as well as an experiment in social and governmental design.

Please check it out, read the rules (first post), and share your ideas.
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A Few Magical Thought Seven [30 Dec 2006|07:22pm]
[ mood | enthralled ]

At this point we'll be taking a short detour to consider magic items. The ever popular toys and tools so many adore.

Unfortunately, in the situation as we've got it set up, magic items don't work exactly as we think they should. The first problem is, as we have thinks set up, enchantments cannot be made permanent. That is, a magical property cannot be imparted to an object.

Let me explain. Magic can be used on things for a number of purposes. The first is to enhance or amplify a quality or property an item already has. Strength in the case of a steel beam. Another is to correct a flaw in an item. Such as mending a crack in a plate. Either can be done either by changing the item in question in some manner that produces the desired result, or by 'masking' or 'boosting' the item in question. Either because the desired property is not normally associated with the item, or the technician is a lazy slob.

An example of masking is making a diamond more durable. Diamonds are brittle, they are not known for their durability. To make it 'more' durable is to impart to it a quality it doesn't really have. To mask an item using magic one must make the enchantment permanent. Which, by the way our example universe works cannot be done. Therefor the magic has to be made self-sustaining and self-renewing.

You see, magic is a transitory effect. It can be used to create permanent change, but due to its basic nature it cannot be made permanent itself. Unless some way of making it self-sustaining and self-renewing is found any magic will have it's effect, than end.

This means that most enchantments are done to enhance an object. Making knives sharper or silk cloth softer, because those are properties intrinsic to those items. It is only when a property alien to the item is desired that "permanent" enchantments are used.

An example of this would be a hunting rifle enchanted to function as a GPS unit. Rifles do not function as GPS units in and of themselves. But with the right casting they can be made to function as GPS units. Thus the enchantment must be made self-sustaining and self-renewing for any hunting rifle to function as a GPS unit on a continuing basis.

There are no exceptions, and this sort of thing makes disrupting any sort of enchantment relatively easy once you know how. Thus most enchanters will put measures in place to protect against dispelling, keeping in mind the fact that such protections also require 'fueling and maintenance' and can be dispelled themselves.

Which brings us to our next post in this series, counters and deconstruction.

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