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Thread: A History of The World!

  1. #11
    Quote Originally Posted by epimetheus View Post
    I thought Tolkien built his worlds first then created a story within them? I don't think there's a right or wrong way of world building (within extreme parameters); there's the risk of boring with world details whichever way (The Similarion anyone?). Maybe that risk is higher for worlds built first (does any collate stats on these things?), but there are precedents for popular stories either way.
    Tolkien created the elvish language first -- he was linguist and enjoyed the process of creating a language from scratch -- he then wrote the story as a place to use the elvish language.
    “Fools” said I, “You do not know
    Silence like a cancer grows
    Hear my words that I might teach you
    Take my arms that I might reach you”
    But my words like silent raindrops fell
    And echoed in the wells of silence : Simon & Garfunkel


    Those who enjoy stirring the chamber-pot should be required to lick the spoon.

    Our job as writers is to make readers dream, to infiltrate their minds with our words and create a new reality; a reality not theirs, and not ours, but a new, unique combination of both.

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  2. #12
    Quote Originally Posted by Terry D View Post
    Tolkien created the elvish language first -- he was linguist and enjoyed the process of creating a language from scratch -- he then wrote the story as a place to use the elvish language.
    I thought he started with the maps, hence him saying:'I wisely started with a map, and made the story fit'
    Unless that refers just to LoTR and not The Hobbit?

  3. #13
    Member Rojack79's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by luckyscars View Post
    Touched a nerve I see...

    Rojack, your reasoning is predicated on the notion that you are somehow an exceptional case. It’s the old “My writing approach is different because my story is different and I’m vastly different...therefore all the hard-learned lessons and combined wisdom of writers who have not merely started but actually completed work don’t apply to me” appeal to ego.

    So you know what? Fine. You keep thinking you are somehow cut from a different cloth, that you are able to approach writing in this “vastly different” way and not merely dig yourself into a hole, and may it bring you much success. I’ll leave it to others to tell you how great your ideas are.
    No nerves touched. Just pointing out simple observation. For this series I'm going to need a timeline. Plain & simple. I'm not saying that writing process that Gourge R.R. sucks and won't work for me or at all. Hell I have two fanfictions, 75,000 words and the other a few thousand over 100,000 words done, both with absolutely zero planning such as this, with literally nothing more than a few sparse scenes in my head and a thim strand connecting them. That writing process works yes but for me and this series I have to plan out every little detail or somewhere along the line I'm going to do an add pull. And i don't want that. So for me it is best to plan ahead.
    This might not be my best work but that just means there's room to improve.

  4. #14
    Quote Originally Posted by epimetheus View Post
    I thought he started with the maps, hence him saying:'I wisely started with a map, and made the story fit'
    Unless that refers just to LoTR and not The Hobbit?
    The history of the books is quite complicated. They seem to have grown organically from unrelated ideas Tolkien explored just for fun.

    https://middle-earth.xenite.org/how-...-middle-earth/
    “Fools” said I, “You do not know
    Silence like a cancer grows
    Hear my words that I might teach you
    Take my arms that I might reach you”
    But my words like silent raindrops fell
    And echoed in the wells of silence : Simon & Garfunkel


    Those who enjoy stirring the chamber-pot should be required to lick the spoon.

    Our job as writers is to make readers dream, to infiltrate their minds with our words and create a new reality; a reality not theirs, and not ours, but a new, unique combination of both.

    Visit Amazon and the Kindle Store to check out Reflections in a Black Mirror, and Chase

    Hidden Content






  5. #15
    Member Rojack79's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Aquilo View Post
    There's nothing wrong with the author knowing this, but the balance comes with what the reader then needs to know and when. I like the drip-feed approach: just as little as the story unfolds. World-building is like handling flashbacks: done right, it's just a natural part of the story, done wrong, and it's battered sausage in a cake shop.
    That sounds very unappetizing.
    This might not be my best work but that just means there's room to improve.

  6. #16
    Member Rojack79's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by epimetheus View Post
    Next year? By the time you write and publish any story that is going to be wrong, making your story alternative history rather than straight sci-fi - which might be what you want?



    I thought Tolkien built his worlds first then created a story within them? I don't think there's a right or wrong way of world building (within extreme parameters); there's the risk of boring with world details whichever way (The Similarion anyone?). Maybe that risk is higher for worlds built first (does any collate stats on these things?), but there are precedents for popular stories either way.

    With many computer games now emphasising world building I wonder whether there is a generational divide in this too?

    Does anyone know how Terry Pratchett built his worlds and stories? One of my favourite world builds.
    Well I'm not exactly going for alternate history but hey I can't predict every little detail. If I get this going when they launch the rocket for the mars mission then I'll change around a few things.

    If I remember correctly Tolkien did a far but of world building before hand. In fact I believe one of his books is nothing more than notes, highlights, and even a huge timeline for his universe he created. I believe it was his son who put the book together from all of the notes he had left behind after he died.
    This might not be my best work but that just means there's room to improve.

  7. #17
    Quote Originally Posted by epimetheus View Post
    I thought Tolkien built his worlds first then created a story within them? I don't think there's a right or wrong way of world building (within extreme parameters); there's the risk of boring with world details whichever way (The Similarion anyone?). Maybe that risk is higher for worlds built first (does any collate stats on these things?), but there are precedents for popular stories either way.

    With many computer games now emphasising world building I wonder whether there is a generational divide in this too?

    Does anyone know how Terry Pratchett built his worlds and stories? One of my favourite world builds.
    There isn't a right or wrong way to work, you're right, but what there is is a long and sad track record of 'writers' who spend YEARS focusing on 'research' or 'planning' and find the vast majority of it useless to the final product. I know this from personal experience.

    And that, of course, is assuming there ever is a final product. And least I wrote the lousy book that took me eight years. We all know often these types of people will eventually just fatigue and come up with another 'novel' they have to 'plan' and on and on it goes in a circle. This board alone is rife. My comments were merely intended to help Rojack avoid that path as I have been there. But I am guessing Rojack probably needs to figure it out himself. That's fine. It's his time to spend.

    Briefly regarding Tolkien...Yes Tolkien did come up with the language first as his background was as an academic and he had a lot of linguistic knowledge. Such a person isn't probably relevant in a conversation about an average Joe who wants to write fantasy. But the salient point is he absolutely did not come up with a detailed history of Middle Earth in advance of drafting. The Hobbit contains a far less developed fictional universe than in Lord Of The Rings and The Similarion. indicating the development was almost certainly gradual and over time. Much like GRR Martin's.

    Again, finding an exception doesn't prove anything anyway. It seems the best way to do this is to simply plan what is needed. The absolute minimum skeleton - in order to start and then, as needed, you can add to that plan to keep track. Timelines and biographies and other endless superfluities under the guise of 'slow and steady' are certainly 9 times in 10 part of writing avoidance. That's all.
    Last edited by luckyscars; May 18th, 2019 at 04:55 AM.
    "If you don't like my peaches, don't shake my tree."

  8. #18
    Quote Originally Posted by Rojack79 View Post
    No nerves touched. Just pointing out simple observation. For this series I'm going to need a timeline. Plain & simple. I'm not saying that writing process that Gourge R.R. sucks and won't work for me or at all. Hell I have two fanfictions, 75,000 words and the other a few thousand over 100,000 words done, both with absolutely zero planning such as this, with literally nothing more than a few sparse scenes in my head and a thim strand connecting them. That writing process works yes but for me and this series I have to plan out every little detail or somewhere along the line I'm going to do an add pull. And i don't want that. So for me it is best to plan ahead.
    Okay so, now that you have your timeline...are you now going to write it or is there more to do?
    "If you don't like my peaches, don't shake my tree."

  9. #19
    Quote Originally Posted by Rojack79 View Post
    Here's a rather condensed version of the timeline folks.
    My advice to you, Rojack, would actually be to not tell us this first. I'm interested to read your story once you have some chapters done, but I'd rather not know all the skeleton behind it because I want to read it as the average reader would--with no background, just starting from page one. That way I can properly evaluate and comment on it. Whatever way you want to go about building your world, fine, but there's really no way to give you feedback before you've written anything. It'll probably benefit you more to just post some writing in the workshops and ask questions here if need be.
    "So long is the way to the unknown, long is the way we have come. . ." ~ Turisas, Five Hundred and One

    "[An artist is] an idiot babbling through town. . .crying, 'Dreams, dreams for sale! Two for a kopek, two for a song; if you won't buy them, just take them for free!'" ~ Michael O' Brien,
    Sophia House

    Christ is risen from the dead,
    trampling on Death by death,
    And on those in the tombs,
    lavishing light.



  10. #20
    Quote Originally Posted by luckyscars View Post
    There isn't a right or wrong way to work, you're right, but what there is is a long and sad track record of 'writers' who spend YEARS focusing on 'research' or 'planning' and find the vast majority of it useless to the final product. I know this from personal experience...
    It's a reasonable warning. Sounds like you didn't enjoy world building. But it sounds like Rojack is thoroughly enjoying themself, and time you enjoy wasting is never wasted time.

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