I am, I admit, addicted to worldbuilding. It’s something that I can do whenever; I have CNS Lupus that gives me awful brain fog sometimes. In those times,though, as well as when I’m mentally clear as crystal, I can create worlds, make new plants and animals or combinations of them, put in what creatures might go there, futz with the landscapes, make maps, and figure out what type of people go there… I know there are other worldbuilders out there; I’ve talked to a few over at for http://wanatribe.com/ for instance. I do worlds of both science fiction and fantasy, with different flavors; I’ve at least one world that’s more steampunk/postapocalyptic, one that’s completely aliens, and one very dark fantasy, among the others, for instance.
I write stories within the worlds I’ve created. It’s not a finite thing which comes first: world or story, because Kritter, one of my worlds, started out with just a story, and I filled in all the information about it later on. By contrast, I designed the world of Rubikia, a science fiction world, first — or at least I started doing it that way. I really couldn’t help that part; I was a little kid, and Rubikia was my go-to pretend world. I wonder if there are other worldbuilders out there who have a world they’ve had since childhood?
Stories upon stories are what I write, and have written, for years — decades, even. And most of them are connected to a world I’ve made. Not all, mind you. It’s maybe 70/30 by now which stories are world-linked and which are just standalones I get ideas for them from everywhere and everything I run across during one day or many, so I have a mess of worlds and of stories both.
I believe I should begin by mapping out My Universe as It Stands Currently:
1)Rubikia: a science fiction galaxy, I’ve been writing about it ever since I was able to write; it literally came from stories I used to make up when I was small about my stuffed animals. I am currently working on learning to program, in hopes of someday making it into a comp game. Rubikia is my lifelong project; it also has four separate languages created for it.
2)Kritter: high fantasy. This is my most successful world so far, having about 6 stories published (in various places, including “Beyond Centauri”).
3)Perriwinkle: a mix between high and urban fantasy, this world has a sort of Candyland vibe to it, with a dark side. I’ve taken from European fairy tales for a lot of the characters here. I’ve also written one book for it, but it isn’t edited yet. And a few stories, none published as of yet. Lol, although this one has the distinction of being part of my wedding vows: “I will save you from Candy-Flour Fighting Fairies” was a line that nobody there fully understood but the two of us!
4)Fylde: my only historical fiction world, but being me it’s historical fic/fantasy. There’s magic in some of the lands here, just a different kind, and one of the lands is totally steampunk. I get nervy working with this one much; it requires a metric ton of research to maintain, since I want the various lands to be more or less historically accurate and I’m a stickler for perfection
5)Glana: one novella currently, but it needs work badly; this is a fantasy world, not high fantasy entirely
6)Thiriel: did I mention I get inspiration from everything, and this includes computer games? This post-apocalyptic world came out of the other summer listening to my husband playing “Fallout” for a few weeks. He stopped after awhile, but the world remains:) They have a mage society in the middle of the land, and the rest is basically recovering from nuclear winter in stages. A few stories so far.
7)Soul Gardens: this dark place appeared after a very bad time in my life… but well, I’m glad this came as the result. It’s dark fantasy, includes werewolves and vampires. The ruler lives atop a garbage dump and she loves to spew chaos into the world.
8)Hlith & Hlinn: my version of Heaven/Hell/Purgatory. But… their God is missing, there are demons all over the place, and you really don’t want the Postman coming to your door. Fantasy.
9)Phendrak: currently it’s just in map form, but it’s historical fic/fantasy, like Fylde, though from different periods
10)Cherryn’s World: lol, it’s hard naming this post-apocalyptic/futuristic sf world. It all started back in 1997 or so, when I wrote this little story called “Cherryn Unplugged” for PariahOnline (http://dotguy.net). They liked it. And soon I had other ideas for Cherryn, and it went on to become a serial. To date, it’s my husband’s favorite thing I’ve ever written. Currently I’m on and off working on a book that takes place two or three generations after Cherryn, called “Not Afraid to Die.” (though I tend to call it the “Bac Book” to myself) It regards people who’ve taken the symbiosis of humans and bacteria a little beyond nature, and created a whole new kind of human being in the process.
11)Zhiyr: just a name at the moment
13)X’s World: sf, hard and speculative. It’s got a book, and is about the descendants of a ship full of Muslims and Buddhists who crashed on Venus. I had to do a fair amount of research for it, regarding what kind of plants *might* survive there. And well, the MC does change shape, becoming a creature of living mercury or something like it.
That’s the current listing. By now, some of those worlds have books either written or in the process. Kritter has a book, so does Perriwinkle, and the infamous “Bac Book” is I swear my white elephant at the moment. No published books yet, though. And then there’s “Nirvana of Many Allahs” that almost made it, and then tanked at the ninth inning, so to speak. That one’s the most complete book thus far.
Writing’s important to me; I’ve used it to help me through some of the toughest times in my life, and still do it now. Worldbuilding is the same. Someday I want to have a ton of worlds, all active — at the moment, I love the ones I have.