During the Writer’s Digest Annual Convention, I had the privilege to talk with Theresa “Soni” Guzmán Stokes, Executive Director of the Historical Writers of America. During our conversation, I said that world building as I see it is fictional anthropology. There are so many things that interact and affect each other when creating a new culture that sometimes get overlooked by fantasy and sci-fi writers because they don’t look at their world like an anthropologist would a new culture to study. So let’s take a look at just a fraction of the things to think about when creating a new culture, and how everything around them can be interdependent with the culture.
I’ve been preparing for a while now for the upcoming Writer’s Digest Annual Conference, at which I’ll be pitching my novel (set in the same world as my story “Spies and Taboos”). One of the questions in the numerous “How to Pitch to an Agent” type articles has always been a bit difficult for me to answer, not because I had no answer, but because I had too many. It took quite a while for me to come up with a concise answer that I actually felt reflected my own writing. So I wanted to discuss the question What kind of writer are you? and why the answer really is important.
For the last year or so I’ve been actively working toward my goal of becoming a full active member of the Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America and this last week I’ve received confirmation that I’d been accepted.
This is a big step forward toward my goal of becoming a successful author and I can’t wait to move forward to my next writing challenge!
Recently, my friends and I were looking for a new multiplayer game to play together. We found a free game on the PS4 called Tera and figured we’d give it a try until we decided on a new game to buy. We lasted all of two hours or so before the overall gameplay was so horrendous we all promptly deleted the game. But the biggest criticism started long before we made it to the actual game. I’m going to pop back to a topic I’ve mentioned before, and will probably cover again—Women’s Fashion.
In my last post about women’s fashion in fantasy and sci-fi art and games, I rallied for giving women decent support and not defaulting to boob armor. It’s a pet peeve of mine. But what Tera offered was so terrible that I actually texted my friend that I was tempted not to play on principle.
We did end up playing, and a great deal of the initial amusement that kept us going as long as we did was from joking about each new horrible outfit the women ended up with, especially since we had a group of men and women and so saw the perfectly acceptable and sometimes the utterly over-dressed men. (At one point I was convinced men in this world were stealing all the clothes so the women were left with nothing.)
Let me show you some examples. Be warned, these are not safe for work.
Recently, I was listening to the Stuff to Blow Your Mind podcast and came across an episode on aphantasia, which really got me thinking about how we visualize our worlds. Mainly because I connected quite a bit with what they described. Aphantasia is where a person is not able to visualize imagery in the “Mind’s Eye.” As I write fantasy and science fiction, things that literally no one has seen before, I found it very interesting that I saw many aphantasic tendencies in my own visualization process. So, let’s take a look at what that means.
Today I want to look at the world of one of my favorite recent games. And, yes, I am using the word recent rather loosely here. But seeing as I only got it late last year and have played it twice since then, I’m going to count it as recent. And since it has been out for more than a year, I’m going to spoil a few things during this review, though not too much.
As of now, I’ll be switching my pen name from S. L. Scott to Shana Scott to avoid confusion with another author. On my publications page any stories published as S. L. Scott will be noted.
Thanks for following me, and I hope to have many more stories under my new name.
I tend to write more fantasy than sci-fi, but Krem and Max have made me fall in love with their buddy comedy in space and demand more stories of them. Far be it for me to ignore them. 🙂
After a short hiatus due to some health issues, I’m finally feeling up to writing again. As promised, let’s continue looking at the dangers of how much world building to reveal. Last time we saw how too much world-building can bog down an otherwise good story through Ready Player One. Now we’re going to talk about how too little world building can leave your audience frustrated and upset. For this, we’re going to leave books and head to the world of video games for The Last Guardian.
“The Curse of Manorville House” is officially available for purchase on Amazon for 99¢ or free for Kindle Unlimited subscribers.
The main character is loosely based on my grandmother who died this past January, so I’m pleased to see it found a home.
I like to think of this as the senior citizen version of Supernatural. An elderly woman living in a retirement home finds herself drawn into a journey to another dimension to break a curse that brings death to any resident visited by a strange cat.