The Journeyman Writer’s Handbook: Building Worlds

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The Journeyman Writer’s Handbook is a series of classes designed to make your writing life more productive, more rewarding and more successful. Building Worlds is the eighth of these classes, and is your guide to creating memorable, engaging and varied spaces for your stories.

The best fictional worlds are more than just stages and sets; from Sunnydale to Stars Hollow, from Gotham to Hogsmeade, from Rivendell to the bridge of the Enterprise, they are a vital part of our favorite stories, and the most powerful way of keeping your reader engaged. Whether you’re interested in ancient kingdoms, in the streets of 16th-century Florence, in alien planets under unfamiliar stars or in a quirky small town on the coast, Building Worlds will give you everything you need to breathe life into your setting, and make your story an unforgettable experience. From epic fantasy to contemporary magical realism, from science fiction to modern thrillers, this class can teach you how to make your world all that it needs to be.

Over the course of this two-hour class, Alastair will be your guide as we explore:

  • The basic principles of fictional worlds
  • Narrative spaces, stages and sets
  • Language, dialect and accent
  • History and depth
  • Maps, charts and exploration
  • Fantasy and magic
  • World-building and theme
  • Consistency and solidity
  • Extending your world beyond the page

You will leave the class with everything you need to create compelling, vibrant and unforgettable worlds, ready for romance, adventure, or whatever your story demands!

This is a two-hour live class, presented by story expert Alastair Stephens. In the downloadable packet, you’ll find video and audio recordings of the lecture, including Q&As from the live audience, along with notes and a transcript of the key points. Those files are DRM free, and you’ll be able to keep them, watch or listen to them as often as you like, and copy them to any computer or device that you own.

TJWH: Building Worlds