Way of the worldbuilder

Hello, my dear reader! Today, I’d like to share a couple of things about my actual working process and how I turn my ideas to fully fleshed out worlds!

This is the first drawn map of my fictional world “Jalten”

For me, it all starts with a theme or a overall morale of the story. What’s the main conflict? What is the driving force of the world that drives the story forward?

For me, this question must be a big one and it must be answered with something greater, than: “A super evil person wants to destroy the world.” For me, that’s not a good answer, for it’s not emotionally exciting or attaching. I actually started to answer to this question four years ago. My first idea of the world and how it came to be was something along the lines of:

“Two brothers crafted the world, but the other got jealous of his brother’s work and began to silently steal the beings his brother created and twisted them in his own way:”

I built a strong conflict, which is personal, even to the “God-like” characters of my world. I wanted my “dark lord” to have a personal reason for his wickedness and to have a strong personal motive of doing the things he does. The current version of my world follows my old idea closely, with a few imporvements and additions here and there, but the heart and soul is still the same.

Some of you may know, that I’m a huge Tolkien fan and I see him as my idol and biggest source of inspiration. I admire his work and the detail he put into his worldbuilding and I’m on a quest to create my own world, with equal detail. I see my world as a sandbox of story possibilities. I can write stories from the current time, past, or future! The source for stories is unending, if the worldbuilding is done well.

A few years ago, I began writing a fantasy novel about the older version of Jalten, but almost immediately, I got stuck. I hadn’t put enough time and effort into the worldbuilding, nor did I explain the reasons behind the things that were happening. I rushed and that’s fatal for a fantasy story.

I’ve worked on the same fantasy world for four years in total, but only now do I feel it slowly getting together. I finally feel like I’ve put enough effort into the world to make it feel real. I’ve built the history of the world from the creation story, to the last political conflict, that the mortal beings are going through. I know every major event of my world’s history as well as the heroes and villains of the world. I’ve built a language for my race called Charitar as well as built detailed religions and kingdoms.

It has been a long journey and I still feel like there’s so much to do. So much detail to add and so much more to discover. But hey, that’s the magic of fantasy worlds. That’s the magic of fiction and that’s the magic I want to enhance and build stronger and stronger.

Relsai jal edril!

See you later, my friend!