World-Building in general
Most of us have seen meme’s where the depth of a movie’s content is compared to that of a book. Usually the movie is depicted as the bit of the iceberg above water, and the book, the portion beneath the waves. But there is a third layer – world-building. That’s the massive portion of the work.
Some writers take little notice of world building before hand, and just make it up as they go. Others go the the extreme of crafting detailed worlds long before they ever write a word.
I fall somewhere in the middle. I like to feel comfortable enough with the surroundings that I can describe most areas. In addition to the setting portion of world-building, there are also the politics, religion, inter-personal interconnections. As a reader, you may never see any of that. But we, as writers, should be well acquainted with those details: a person behaves based on what he’s experienced or done before. Build a solid frame and your house will stand a century. The same is true for works of fiction. That’s not to say world-building is the be-all and end-all, but it’s important, especially for works of Science Fiction and Fantasy.
Here’s my take on the literary iceberg:
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