marycatelli (marycatelli) wrote,

inspiring a world

Developing an idea from one bright, sparkling moment that pulls you in and demands you build it a story to a full plot and a full list of characters has its quirks -- from providing sufficient backstory to make the emotion of the moment clear, to developing the characters in it so that they have sentiments and habits and other stuff that doesn't appear in that moment but which they would be both flat and dreary without,

The world-building aspects can also be interesting,  Especially when you are filing off serial numbers to steal an idea.

How to swing the necessary powers for people to enable things to happen like that can be a trick, but magic or technology or both if you're using steampunk or magitech, can generally pull it around, though the flavor you give it will determine as much as the power level.  (And then there is the consideration of keeping it down to the proper power level -- settings with too much magic or tech can break a scenario, too.)

Social structure can be trickier.  Status differences can be a lot of things.  All the intricacies of noble birth and rank.  Superiors and subordinates at work.  Governmental position.  Military rank.  Wealth and poverty.  Slavery and freedom, which does not always work in one direction; the personal secretary of the governor can make all sorts of freemen jump if he goes to the market to buy stuff.  The subtle effects of blue blood in a democracy.  Not all of which are interchangeable in every situation where some status difference is required to pull off the interactions entailed.  Though some can be fiddled with -- the rich man might have to make a few donations that the noble or the blue-blooded man would pull off with a few suggestions.  Others are just impossible; situations in which a mesalliance is against the law require some forms of social structure, and in others just don't work.  It certainly has great effect on exactly what authority one person has over the other.
Tags: filing off serial numbers, genre: steampunk, idea development, world-building: economics, world-building: government, world-building: law, world-building: magic (plot device), world-building: nobility, world-building: social structure, world-building: technology

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