World Building: Power & Conflict

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When I develop ideas for a new fantasy series, I think first of the overall conflict, the positions the point of view characters occupy in their world, what forms of power they wield, and what role they can play in the story’s epic conflict. In discussing power and conflict in world building, I’ll walk you through my thought process of identifying multiple forms of power and influence various characters, traditions, international bodies and more your world may contain and help you start thinking how these may impact on your story’s conflict.

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The Pantser’s Journey Interviews

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Confession: the earliest incarnation of Manipulator’s War was not planned. I swiftly created a cast of thousands, moving sometimes with purpose, sometimes without and usually taking too long to get there. I’d imagine a scene or two, then sit down and write —I was a pantser. From the murk emerged main ideas and characters. The rest got deleted and the best re-written, informed by character craft and story structure studies. From there, several rounds of critical reader and editor feedback informed notes that led to a full fleshing out of my characters and story. If your first pantsed novel or two are a mess, what can help you bring structure to pantsing and help you minimise epic edits? I’ll interview three SFF authors below to find out, tracking their journeys from their pantser’s journey from story chaos to a semblance of order.

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Why I Chose to Self Publish

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Self Publishing wasn’t the first publishing path that appealed to me. Nor were small presses. Like many writers, I figured I’d need a literary agent, because they’re the gatekeepers of middling to large publishing companies and because I didn’t know much about book marketing. Then I worked with multiple critical readers, discovered how difficult it is to know when you’ve finished editing, and figured an editorial agent would do nicely. But when I really thought about it, I was facing down all the usual querying obstacles, plus a couple of large experience-related and some personal ones. The following are the factors I weighed and measured before deciding to self publish my first trilogy.

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