There And Draft Again

A Fellowship of Fantasy Writers

Holiday Worldbuilding December 22, 2012

Filed under: Writing — thereanddraftagain @ 3:58 pm
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The holidays are upon us and I thought I’d discuss how important including them in your worldbuilding can be to the realism of the story. Now, this doesn’t mean your manuscript requires Christmas. Especially not if your fantasy takes place elsewhere or in a realm where Christmas does not exist. However, you can and should mirror the importance of holidays in your text.

Holidays create a sense of culture and community and by adding them to the world you’ve built, it gives credibility and believability to your work. There’s a few brainstorming steps you can take to create the appropriate holidays for your story:

1-      Assess the culture and community you have in your world

2-      Review our Earthly holidays (across national borders) to get inspiration

3-      Write ideas and notes about the type of celebration you wish to include

4-      Develop your holidays with traditions and nuances to bring it to life

5-      Insert into your story with foreshadowing and hints before its introduction whether on the forefront of the narrative or in the background

If you think about your favorite fantasy stories, they all employ holidays as a way of creating a rich culture for readers to immerse themselves in. You might not have believed before reading this how important holidays can be to worldbuilding, but with a little brainstorming, research and creativity, you can pull together a wonderful celebratory day or several that your readers will fawn over.

Rachel

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3 Responses to “Holiday Worldbuilding”

  1. And by creating holidays for your fantasy world, you can create a calendar year for them. This will help with your timeline and settings since you can then figure out what season it would be in your world at any given moment in your story!

  2. Holidays are great tool for introducing backstory / history details about the world too. Not to mention great for highlighting family or relationship tensions / expectations! Great food for thought Rachel.

  3. carlarcher Says:

    I always find that researching more obscure holidays (e.g. those of ancient rome or egypt) helps to inspire more believable, detailed holidays which sit more easily in a body of work as most readers to some extent are familiar with their basic concepts.


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