World building is a wonderful thing, because you never know where it’s going to take you.
If there is one thing I love about developing intricate stories, it’s world building. For my unpublished Transporter series, I created some fourteen hundred years of history to play in, and began thinking about how I got from Point A to Point Z. For Her Demonic Majesty I kept my action local to Chicago, but I imagined it as part of a huge conurbation known as The Pentagram, and it became necessary to build some terminology and rules around magic in the world. Lately I’ve dug into building viable world around other stars, and then integrating them into stories–such as what I did in Diners at the Memory’s End, where I built a system around a K Class star so I could have an interesting couple of paragraphs in the story.
I’m getting into some world building for a story, something revolving around a couple of characters another person and I created for a game a long while back. I’m trying to pull them out of one universe and put them into another, and it’s involving a bit of brain work, because I’m having to change everything. Not that changing everything is a bad thing, because I get rid of a universe that essentially turned your characters into a form of fan fiction, and I put these characters into a world that they own.
I’m all about owning.
One of the things I have is an idea where my kids from Europe–where the two main characters are from–fly over to Boston, where they’ll attend a private school somewhere close. So, they fly out of somewhere in Europe and head to Logan Airport, after which . . .
That brought up the question: how do I move a gaggle of kids from Logan Airport to some super private school out on Cape Ann? Well, there are buses that could do the job, and originally I thought about that, but then I started using the Google Maps on Logan and–what’s that? It’s a train station!
See, I wanted to get my kidlettes to Salem, and from there I could take them by bus to Cape Ann, because trains are cool, no? Sure. Only one problem: the train outside the never goes to Salem. It stops at a rail-head about ten miles north, far short of the Witch Capital.
See, though, this is the age of the Internet, and all one has to do is Google “How to get from Logan Airport to Salem by train,” and you’re catapulted into a world where answers are there for the taking. Like the one that said you have to take the subway from the Airport over to the Government Center, then catch the line to North Station, and from there you’re on your way.
One MBTA subway map later, and I see they’re right: take the Blue Line to the Green Line, and from there you’re off to the train station, and from there you’re off to Salem . . .
So now I had my kids on the way to Salem, where I was going to put them on buses for the trip out to Cape Ann. So I’m looking at the area on Google Maps using satellite view, and–what’s this? This line cutting through the woods? Why, it’s a train track. So back to the MBTA site and after a quick check of the train schedules–yep, there’s a commuter train that head out to the cape.
Which gives me other ideas . . .
Not only do I love world building, but did I mention I love the Internet?
It can take me to so many places I’ve never been, all so I can others along.