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Behind the scenes - World Building: Any Recommendations?

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message 1: by Trevor (new)

Trevor (saturdayplace) I've been a fan of David Eddings since introduced to him years ago in 6th grade. His Belgariad (5 books), Mallorean (5 books), Elenium, and Tamuli (both are trilogies) have been in my semi-regular rotation ever since. Garion is quite possibly my favourite protagonist ever.

Which is why I was delighted to find his Rivan Codex, which is a compilation of the background material he created in preparing the 10 volumes of the Belgariad and the Mallorean. In sum, it is his world building philosophy.

It's been a while since I read it, so perhaps I'm romanticizing it a bit, but does anyone else know of any other authors opining about their world building?

message 2: by Michael (new)

Michael Minutillo (wolfbyte) Ian Irvine built the Three Worlds universe before writing the books set in them (as an escape from writing his doctoral thesis). Interestingly enough, when you read the books in that series you really do get a sense that the world lives and breathes and you're just looking at a small story from it. I really wish he'd release his notes and maps as a separate book.

I have "guide" books for The Wheel of Time by Robert Jordan and Shanara by Terry Brooks which both reveal the great levels of detail that have gone into those worlds as well but not any other novels dealling with world-building itself.

message 3: by Jlawrence, S&L Moderator (new)

Jlawrence | 960 comments Mod
There's an annotated version of Vernor Vinge's A Fire Upon The Deep that includes his notes to himself when revising his initial drafts of the novel. A large part of them relate to the world-building of the novel's universe. It's not a polished presentation like the Rivan Codex sounds like, or even fully-fleshed out background notes (Vinge makes clear how messy and sometimes contradictory the notes can be), but they do allow you to see the process or world-building and world-refining in action. I've only dipped into this annotated version a little bit, but it's pretty darn interesting.

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