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Building A World? (Or not)

Just_A_UsernameThis teenager is a 'regular' and has contributed a lot of work, comments and/or forum posts, and has received many votes and high ratings over a long period of time. posted this thread...
Feb. 21 at 6:58 pm

Hey guys! I'm going to get straight to the point: What I'm working on now requires A LOT of world building, and it would be awesome if you guys would be down with helping build a world from scratch. Any number of people is totally fine, the more the merrier right...I'm not leaning towards any genre at the moment. PLEASE CONSIDER THIS! [If you made it this far you might as well try and help a sister out :) ]

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Feb. 22 at 2:49 pm

I'd be happy to help you, but could you do mend the favor of giving me some advice in return?

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Feb. 22 at 2:50 pm

Me, sorry. Autocorrect is annoying sometimes.

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simple_effectThis teenager is a 'regular' and has contributed a lot of work, comments and/or forum posts, and has received many votes and high ratings over a long period of time. replied...
Feb. 22 at 9:45 pm

Thanks so much I really appreciate it! And yeah I'd definitely be willing to give advice. Feel free to pitch whatever it is you want me to "give advice" on.

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Feb. 22 at 10:03 pm

My novel's world occurs in a fictional European country. The country is Germanic (they speak German, have similar culture, etc.) and is kind of similar to Germany the way Austria is. The government, however, is based on Belarus's... which is much less democratic than they like to claim. I had a name for my country, but it turns out that the name I picked actually belongs to a Native American nation up in Canada, so I need a new one.
 
I've looked at several things, like Old High German words to use and the names of tribes in the area. While trying to find Old High German isn't easy, I've found a lot of tribe names:
Aelvaeones

Helveconae

Angrivarii

Baemi

Betasii (Baetasii)

Brisgavi

Skiri (Skans) Skiren

Chasuarii (Chauken)

Cherusci

Warnen (auch Wariner, Varinner, Varinne, Variner)

Die Narisker (auch Naristen, Narister, Narisken, Varisker oder Varasker genannt)

Amsivarier (auch Angrevarier, Angarier, Engern).
 
I was thinking of basing the names these or the Old High German, using the words/tribe names as the first half of the name and then basing the end on the names of present Germanic countries (ending in -land like Deutschland or in -reich like Österreich).
Any help or input would be much appreciated.
 
What do you need help with for your world? It also might help to know the characters (characters must fit the world, or if you've already made the characters, trying to fit the world to them is necessary) and other factors that will change how this world runs.

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simple_effectThis teenager is a 'regular' and has contributed a lot of work, comments and/or forum posts, and has received many votes and high ratings over a long period of time. replied...
Feb. 23 at 11:36 am

That's really unique and interesting. I personally feel like ending in -reich will make the names even more dynamic. Something such as Helvereich or Brisgreich might work for the name of your country. If you'd rather do -land endings, basing off of the examples you gave, Warnland sounds interesting. Something I always consider when picking names, whether for characters, places, etc., is how the reader is going to read and pronounce that name. Always consider the multiple pronunciations for (lack of a better word) "foreign" types of names that the reader might use unless it's strictly specified in the novel. I can maybe do some research to find an interesting name as well to help.

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Feb. 23 at 2:49 pm

Thank you. And whatever you have for your world, I'm more than willing to help!

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simple_effectThis teenager is a 'regular' and has contributed a lot of work, comments and/or forum posts, and has received many votes and high ratings over a long period of time. replied...
Feb. 23 at 9:33 pm

Anytime :). For my prospective novel, I have the characters and a good foundation of my plot already sorted out. The greatest difficulty has been creating this world AROUND the characters and plot, as the setting will play a subtle yet huge role in the storyline. In a nutshell, it's about this girl who has another world in her mind with people, cities, etc. But that world (Aka "Mind World" until I find a name similarly to you) has more of an animalistic vibe whose society has fairly different values. In the real world, she's just an ordinary girl blah blah blah excess plot excess plot :D. Just kidding, but what I really am hoping to find help with is creating this "Mind World" which kind of has a sci-fi but primitive feel. Very contradictory, I know!

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simple_effectThis teenager is a 'regular' and has contributed a lot of work, comments and/or forum posts, and has received many votes and high ratings over a long period of time. replied...
Feb. 23 at 9:34 pm

My indentation didn't work up there, but sorry for the long post anyways.

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Feb. 23 at 9:45 pm

Sci-fi but primitive... this society could have relatively good technology (like advanced weaponry and science), but still follow ancient traditions like pagan religions, sacrifice, etc. If you want this sort of image, maybe read His Dark Materials. It's set in a Victorian-ish era, but definitely gives off a primitive kind of vibe.
 
Or maybe look at something historically- use Russian serfdom and reliance on agriculture in the 1700s/1800s, but also use the powerful navy of the British Empire. A powerful divide between upper and lower class, too.
 
It really depends on what kind of era you want this world set in- is civilization just beginning (city-states), or are the countries/territories in a colonial era? Imperial? Modern? Future? That's the first thing to be decided.

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Feb. 23 at 9:56 pm

I've been debating the ending of my novel for a while now. My main character is a high-ranking politician's daughter. My antagonist throws a coup with the intent to kill the top officials of the nation (sort of like if someone had killed off a more powerful version of the American cabinet).
 
Here's the dilemma: 1) what's the easiest way to get a group of people together to make for an easier target? 2) since my main character and her father are not killed out, what should I do: have her captured while he gets away, and then have her used as a captive by the antagonist, or have the both of them escape and attempt to flee a country under martial law?

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Feb. 23 at 10:06 pm

Another idea I thought of: your world itself could be alive. Like there is an element of intelligence to the land, air, and water itself; it can give people good weather or it can give them droughts, it can have the land be barren or fertile, etc. That definitely adds a primitive feel, regardless of what's going on in the world. So maybe their religion follows a god/gods at the heart of the world, maybe their politicians are the priests or at least seek favor of this deity.
 
It's just an idea, but the religion is an example of all the stuff that's going to go into a world. At least for me, it's easier- real world religions, language, etc.

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simple_effectThis teenager is a 'regular' and has contributed a lot of work, comments and/or forum posts, and has received many votes and high ratings over a long period of time. replied...
Feb. 25 at 9:34 am

Wow that's all incredibly helpful. You have no idea. Having the world be alive in a sense would give great storylines and, like you said, a religious feel that is the basis for that society. I was leaning towards a more imperial style, but it might be more understandable if the civilization was just developing and grows every time she visits there (since it's in her mind).

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simple_effectThis teenager is a 'regular' and has contributed a lot of work, comments and/or forum posts, and has received many votes and high ratings over a long period of time. replied...
Feb. 25 at 9:42 am

For your novel, I believe the ending all depends on HOW you want to end it. Yes, that is what your asking in a way. If the flee together, that could be a great chance to hint at the development of both characters through dialogue. That kind of ending would allow you to show how dynamic they are.
Having her being held captive all depends on what kind of character your protagonist is. Is she an independent, strong, woman? Then it might not be all that fitting for her to be relying on her father to save her. This can happen even if she is an independent girl, it would just contrast her character a little. Then again, it could show the reliance on family in times of peril. These scenarios all depend on the type of character you have pulling the weight of the storyline. Also, if your goal is for them to "destroy" the antagonist and his followers, the capture would set up better for it. What's the easiest way to get a group of people together to make for an easier target? Have a meeting, some sort of assembly to determine a certain outcome. That would group up those people. If that's too cliche or doesn't fit your storyline, then have there be something that everyone wants (whether tangible or intangible) that they all happen to go for.

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Feb. 25 at 2:57 pm

She's pretty independent, but she's never been in any particularly dangerous situations.
 
For yours, if you're choosing a religion, I'd take a look at the follow:
-His Dark Materials (corrupt version of the Catholic Church).
-Game of Thrones (multiple religions to look at for inspiration, with both genuine followers and corrupt scumbags).
-Real life religions, all the way from Juchte to Hiduism to Paganism, and the branches/related religions, like branches of Christianity and sects of Buddhism. Even look at the really weird religions (Church of Euthanasia, Scientology, Nuwaubianism).
You can take a faith with good intentions and create branches of it, and let it become corrupted as your character visits each time. Maybe if your character pops in and out of this world, they become known as a god or an omen... or even a demon/devil.
The religion(s) of your would could be a very central aspect of the world, including how the government is run, or the opposite: marginalized or vilified.
Maybe as the world grows to be imperial, the government takes over the religion (or the religion takes over and brings the empire under its rule).

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Feb. 25 at 3:04 pm

Other religious inspiration:
The Nameless Thirteenth/Crooked Warden, Gentlemen Bas.tards.

Speaker for the Dead (kind of…), Ender’s Game and its sequels.

A ton of the stuff from Doctor Who.

Sith/Jedi from Star Wars, maybe not quite a religion, but…

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simple_effectThis teenager is a 'regular' and has contributed a lot of work, comments and/or forum posts, and has received many votes and high ratings over a long period of time. replied...
Feb. 26 at 7:15 am

If she's never been in a particularly harmful situation, then it is most likely she'd act different. It was just something to consider. I think religion is clearly going to play a large part in making this somewhat advanced world seem more primitive (I mean no offense by that). Thanks for the recommendations; I'll definitely check those out. My biggest issue, which no one may be able to help me with, is actual places in this world. Structure, locations, terrain, etc. I'm trying to let the story do the building but I feel the urge to at least have the basic formation and characteristics of the world down.

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Feb. 26 at 7:48 am

If you're looking at terrain for this world, is it like Earth (a variety of climates, topography, environments, etc.), or is it more like Hoth from Star Wars (All ice and hilly regions. I make no apologies for nerdy references)?
 
Based on this, your religions, clothes, rituals, etc. will all be different. Earth had gods based on the environmental factors of an area (volcano gods and the like), but a Hoth-like area might take on a god/goddess of ice, and maybe only the one. Who knows? Clothes for Earth vary widely. Hoth clothes probably look like they do in the coldest parts of Russia (so maybe look at traditional clothes of very cold areas and adapt them). Rituals depend on religion and society. Much as I didn't like the book, Divergent provides an example: the Choosing Ceremony at age 16 emphasizes the importance of choice and knowing where you fit in society.
 
If you already have characters, what kind of world do they fit in? Characters for The Hunger Games are wildly different from Twilight characters and Harry Potter characters. So putting one of them in the other world would mess it up. If your characters are hardcore survivalist types, then a harsh world in both terrain and government makes sense. If they're well-educated and pampered, then maybe the world is still harsh, but they are high up.

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simple_effectThis teenager is a 'regular' and has contributed a lot of work, comments and/or forum posts, and has received many votes and high ratings over a long period of time. replied...
Feb. 26 at 3:54 pm

Nor will I judge you for nerdy references. Once again, all good points. You've given me A LOT to consider for building a world, which is exactly what I need(ed). Thank you so much and good luck with your story!!! If I come up with something I'll definitely reach out to you again. :)

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AditiVibgyor replied...
Mar. 8 at 7:08 am

All this sounds really interesting and would be more than happy to help !!! But yeah I would ask for help in my articles too if you like ??? :)

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