Worldbuilding Through Characterization
 

Worldbuilding Through Characterization

Article

 
One Way by S. J. Morden
 

One Way

Review

 
#SPFBO 5 Cover Contest
 

Cover Contest

#SPFBO 5

 

Browsing all articles tagged with history.

Unicorn Mirror: A Compendium of Unicorn Lore

Unicorn Mirror: A Compendium of Unicorn Lore 

Introduction: The Ethereal Glimpsing of a Unicorn “The unicorn lived in a lilac wood, and she lived all alone. She was very old, though she did not know it, and she was no longer the careless color of sea foam, but rather the color of snow falling on a moonlit night. But her eyes were […]

Continue reading...

Hell: An Exploration

Hell: An Exploration 

The nature of the afterlife has fascinated and terrified humanity for tens of thousands of years. What, if anything, waits for us after death? Is there more than one place to go? And what happens if you end up in the wrong place? Mythology tells us that there are many destinations for the wicked or […]

Continue reading...

The Many Faces of The Headless Horseman

The Many Faces of The Headless Horseman 

One of the most prominent creatures in both Western and European folktales is the headless horseman and can be dated as far back as the mediaeval times within Celtic folklore. Still, the most popular feature of this legendary phantom is from the prominent American folktale that originated near Tarrytown, New York, in a quiet village […]

Continue reading...

Once Upon A Time: Fairy Tales and Fantasy

Once Upon A Time: Fairy Tales and Fantasy 

Once upon a time… Just about anyone familiar with the Western literary canon knows that phrase. It opens familiar fairy tales we’ve grown up with, like Cinderella and Sleeping Beauty, along with more obscure ones, like Katie Crackernuts. It appears in modern fiction, too, albeit slightly translated. After all, what else could “A long time […]

Continue reading...

A Fantasy Geek’s Guide to YouTube: Weapons and Warfare

A Fantasy Geek’s Guide to YouTube: Weapons and Warfare 

YouTube is an app, a website, and a cultural phenomenon. It’s also a vast and barely-explored wilderness full of content that ranges from dynamic to dire. Whatever your interests are, there’s probably at least one channel out there for you. Still, managing to dig out the channels that cater to your own SFF needs can […]

Continue reading...

A Streak of White Hair: Fantasy or Reality?

A Streak of White Hair: Fantasy or Reality? 

I was recently reading a fantasy romance novel where the main character pushed himself to the limits of his magical abilities and nearly died. Afterward, he was left with a streak of white in his long black hair (if you don’t mind spoilers, this is the book). I’ve seen this before many times in fantasy, […]

Continue reading...

A Fantasy Geek’s Guide to YouTube: Mythology

A Fantasy Geek’s Guide to YouTube: Mythology 

YouTube is an app, a website and a cultural phenomenon. It’s also a vast and only partially explored wilderness full of content that ranges from dynamic to dire. Whatever your interests are, there’s probably at least one channel out there for you. But managing to dig out the channels that cater to your own SFF […]

Continue reading...

Trees in Fantasy – Part One: Trees as Symbols

Trees in Fantasy – Part One: Trees as Symbols 

Magic in fantasy, myth and legend usually occurs as a natural phenomenon, with its own place in the world of the story outside of what is created by mankind and civilisation. The connection between magic and nature has been a common theme in fantastical tales since the earliest days of storytelling. Trees, both individually and […]

Continue reading...

Worlds Within Worlds – Part Five: Qi and Fantasy

Worlds Within Worlds – Part Five: Qi and Fantasy 

Most people associate magic with strange symbols, chanting, and waving a wand around. Dusty books are usually in the picture, along with ritual circles or sacrifices. The mages themselves are usually old men with grey beards—frail but knowledgeable. I’ve already written about them. Compare that kind of magic and mage to qigong and (arguably) its […]

Continue reading...

Not All Those Who Wander Are Lost – What Does It Mean?

Not All Those Who Wander Are Lost – What Does It Mean? 

When Lord of the Rings enthusiasts are not burning wedding bands in fiery pits in their backyard—checking for Black Speech inscriptions—they are frequently found uttering the clever sayings of their favorite fantasy author. Who can blame them? Tolkien, a philologist by trade, is known for many wondrous, existential musings. Yet one proverb is clearly quoted […]

Continue reading...

Worlds Within Worlds – Part Four: Old Grey Beards

Worlds Within Worlds – Part Four: Old Grey Beards 

If you ask someone on the street to name the first three wizards that come to mind, you’ll probably hear the names Gandalf, Merlin, and Dumbledore (or Rincewind, if they’re trying to be clever). The image of the white-bearded old man with a staff is woven into modern fantasy, to the point that Pratchett filled […]

Continue reading...

The Pros and Cons of a Macro Timescale

The Pros and Cons of a Macro Timescale 

Most fantasy and science fiction series tend to be, by their very nature, large in scope. We expect stories about the fate of worlds, the rise and fall of empires, and history in the making. A book might still focus on a character’s personal, small-scale struggle, but it’s rare the focus will only be on […]

Continue reading...