Ones I haven’t seen as often but apply myself. 

1.- Bedtimes stories you tell to children, or lullabies. They can be based in location or species. They can tell us about the world, history, beliefs or something specific about a creature. It can be fun to think of their origin, how they’ve changed over the years and both the meaning that was lost and the meaning that was added. 

2.- Fashion choices. I often let fashion be different for different creatures. I usually create a practical outfit that makes sense historically within the context of my world and then evolve it until I get to the present day of my story. Preferably splitting of into branches and allowing more options. It can tell us about a specific species, about their history and about how the climate has changed, or how they moved locations at some point and had to adapt their clothing to a new climate. 

A very simple example of this from my own book would be the mage’s cloak! Link to a longer post about it. Basically, mages would wear a simple one piece fabric that was easy to then set an illusion over, no wasting time mixing trousers and tops. Over time some mages stopped using illusions, seeing the outfit as acceptable. It became a staple, you saw the cloak, that wasn’t a human but a mage. And then younger generations began personalising the material, instead of boring black, white or brown they started using floral patterns, adding in cool sleeves or hoods! 

Initially, it was practicality, but it evolved. 

3.- Think about what each species does for fun! I often read YA fantasy where the stakes are so high there is no leisure, no downtown, no fun, no hobbies. But this is a great opportunity! What’s popular in your world? Books, plays, board games, long walks, playing sport? Seeing characters just chill can be a great change of pace and allow for some insight into their lives and the world they live in. 

4.- What is imported? And why? Sometimes imports are just practical, we don’t have wool here (unlikely, sheep are literally everywhere, but you get the point), wool is good for clothes, we import it. But other times it’s more complicated. 

Perhaps a species moved across the country at some point, but they were accustomed to a certain type of tea, fruit for certain festivities, so on, so on, and habit dies hard, so, importation becomes a thing. 

So those are my four world-building tips for today. I’ve said it before and will say it again, there is no master list, not check list, world-building is something you can figure out as you go in most genres (some epics may requiere more prep time). What’s important is to keep track of what you’ve said and stay consistent, but you don’t need to know everything before going in. 

As usual,  check out my book, stories I’ve written plus other social medias: here.

How’s your world coming along?