Tuesday, April 24, 2012

U - Universe Creation

So I’m writing a book where reality is just a little bit, well, bent. I’m still on Earth. I’m still in a real city. But the things that are possible in my book aren’t possible in ‘Real Life’. And isn’t that cool?
Being able to conceive of an entirely different reality? 

Granted, there are masters of this universe creation thing. Orson Scott Card. Patrick Rothfuss. Brandon Sanderson. All these people created places with laws of existence that are different then our daily reality. Yet. Yet we just accept them as truth. They wrote their worlds with such skill that it was just a given that Ender existed with Bug Aliens. Rothfuss is a master of storytelling and world building. You don’t question for a second that the type of magic in his books exists. In fact, he makes it so real you start to wonder if it IS real and just simply forgotten about.
Even if you don't like fantasy, READ THIS!
Anyway. The point I’m trying to make is that in writing it’s hard to decide what path to take when introducing our audience to Our World. Personally, I like to just be thrown in, head first. Learn the rules as I go, rather then have it all spelled out at the beginning. It also feels more real to discover the world along with your character, more organic.

 One of the most useful pieces of advice in writing I ever got came from a college professor way back in the day. I was busy writing some novel or another where I had just given the audience All the information about the ‘world’ I had created in the first chapter. Tolkien style. YAWN. But it seemed so important that the reader UNDERSTAND where they were! You know? He said to me, “What are you in such a hurry for?” That statement changed my writing style in a huge way. It was like a bolt to the brain. No idea what I was in such a hurry for. And because of that statement, my Universe Creation...my pacing, if you will, has gotten so much better. Not to say it can’t still use some help! Can’t we all...But that’s what World Building is all about. Pacing. 

Finding the right balance between letting your reader into your secret and giving away the family jewels.

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