Dark Fantasy World Building: Society

Good thing I enjoy world Building. Developing a society is about as difficult as figuring out how Magic works. Usually, there's more than one society and if they all function alike, it needs to be for really good reason.

These sites helped me a lot:Creating Fantasy and Science Fiction Worlds: Day 6: Let Us Make Man in Our Image: Anthropology


Society is an aspect of world building I don't focus on as much as I should. History and Powers take up most of my time. I should've been thinking about this a while ago, though. My novels are set in different villages created for and inhabited by nonhuman creatures.

So, the make-up of each village- how does one race decided to live in a certain area? What does someone have to do to live there? In my novel, a group of people live in a small community and are very choosy about who they let in. They have one person whose opinion they trust without question. If that person doesn't like the potential resident, they aren't allowed in. Simple. Do other communities have this policy or do potential residents have to complete 25 back-flips in a row while reciting poetry?

How big is the village? Can people move in as long as there's free space or is the community always expanding. What type of jobs do residents have? How do they get them? Do new residents have to read a 1,00 page book backwards in a hour to work in the library? How are they paid- money, goods, store credit, or do they work for the good of the village? 

How are people trained for different jobs? A Builder in training may have to spend a week alone in the woods becoming intimate with nature before allowed to chop down one tree. If you haven't noticed, I'm having a lot of fun with this.

How is a leader chosen? Is it the person who founded the town and their descendant? Since my characters have power, is the leadership given to the strongest person? Or, are they voted in? Are there any back-alley deals involved? What a question, of course there are!

If there isn't a person or group of people plotting to put their person in power then I need to figure out why this is. Maybe people terrified are of the leaders, or they love and respect them or had their brains altered making them glassy-eyed, drooling sheep? What a puzzle! I'm having fun just thinking about it. 

What are their holidays? Do they have fun events like Founders Day or a Spring Festival? Though the village has access to technology, not all the residents use it so, how do they entertain themselves?

The children can sneak to the nearest city and use their powers to prank unsuspecting humans. If they get caught by an adult from their home, they get a half-hearted scolding while villagers secretly give them free drinks and sweets.

This post also got me thinking about how they get their resources. Where does the money come from- building material, food? Depending on how my story goes, this may not be that important but it can't hurt to figure it out. I haven't even gotten into the roles of men and women and social classes. This isn't nearly all I need to figure out but it's a good start.

Comments

  1. I've only written on fantasy/sci-fi that didn't take place on Earth. (I mostly write paranormal or urban fantasy.) I did have to think about all these things, and it was fun and time consuming. LOL. You have to fully create the world or your reader won't see it or understand it.

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  2. I used to write more dark fiction than anything. I enjoy less fantasy and more realistic worlds, but I can get immersed in a fantasy realm as well if it's written well.

    Threshold is a fantasy world (RPG online role-playing game) where they have described social systems, legal systems, religion, clans and guilds. It's a very complex world, but they've been building it for over a decade. :)

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  3. I have mental overlays for my world map. There's a religious overlay, a race overlay, languages, economy and so on. I visualise them almost as seperate sheets that lie on top of each other. :)

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  4. I have mental overlays for my world map. There's a religious overlay, a race overlay, languages, economy and so on. I visualise them almost as seperate sheets that lie on top of each other. :)

    ReplyDelete
  5. I have mental overlays for my world map. There's a religious overlay, a race overlay, languages, economy and so on. I visualise them almost as seperate sheets that lie on top of each other. :)

    ReplyDelete

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