Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Life, the Universe & Everything - week 2

Yes, my friends, it is that time again. Totally Tuesday brings another episode of conference recap!! (Please feel free to read that last part with your best movie announcer imitation) Alright now, let's get started!

Worldbuilding 101

~Worlds must obey their own rules and these rules must be consistent!
~ If you break a rule within your world, it must be for an extremely good reason and it must make sense.

~ Don't forget to understand all aspects of your world. You should know the sociological rules, the political rules, the religious rules. Understand it all, BUT that does not mean you should include all of it in your book. Your characters are used to their world and anything the reader learns should be shown to them, not told to them.

~ You must have a system that functions--unless the point of the book is to fix a broken system

~ Immerse the reader in the world, but don't overload them with insignificant details. Anything you teach the reader should have a purpose behind it. If they don't NEED to know it, leave it out.

~ Provide a comfortable transition for your audience into your world. Start with things that are common between their world and ours and expand from there.

~ At the absolute upper limit, you should never have more than 20% of your story be devoted to world building. Must have a minimum of 80% plot. More, if possible.

~ Don't be intimidated to explore a new world, but if there are aspects that don't work then don't keep them. Make the world work for the character and story, not the character and story work for the world.

~ Start with the story--worldbuilding will just become a part of what goes on around it.

Podcasting for Writers

~ This is the next new marketing venue for new and existing authors

~ Outline your podcast like you would your book, know where you are going with it.

~ Can perform digital interviews across the world using skype

~ You can read excerpts from your book, but if you read the entire book you will forfeit your audio rights.

~ It can, sometimes, be worth it to forfeit your audio rights in order to gain a following IF you have exhausted every other avenue.

~ 20-30 providers for free podcasts - people go and search for writers and then they start learning your name.

~ heavier on men than women, so it can be a great opportunity for female authors

~ A fun website to learn about podcasting is www.writingexcuses.com


  1. Ooh! These are some awesome notes! You did good girl! And thanks for sharing all of your awesome knowledge! Jenni

  2. Great tips. Thanks again, Jenn. I'm really wanting to go to the conference now. Next year for sure.

  3. I love these points. The really get to the heart of good writing. I didn't even know that BYU hosted a writer's conference. I can't wait to go next time!

  4. Jenni - Seriously, this is less than half of what I have in my notebook from the conference. :)

    Kasie & Candi - I know, right? We should really get a big group to go next year. It would be a blast. :D

  5. Very interesting. I've been trying to tackle world building in my WiP. It's definitely not easy. I always like to hear more tips.

  6. Your posts from your conference have been very helpful. I've heard from a "lurker" that she takes notes from your notes and she loves our blog. She has a notebook especially for notes and exercises from our blog!! So let's keep these great posts coming!

  7. I think it's so important to understand worldbuilding! Thanks for sharing your notes.



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