Thursday, September 26, 2013

Combining Two Worlds: Compare and Contrast

Hi! P. J. Hoover, and I’m back for my final day blogging about world building. It’s been fun, and I hope you guys have enjoyed it.

Anyway, we now have a book with two distinct worlds created within its pages. What can we, as the author do, to combine these two worlds and make them into one compelling story?

My biggest tip? Compare and contrast. I’ve talked about the outer world with its global heating crisis. The government is taking an active role to make things better (or in some cases worse). In the Underworld, there is turmoil and chaos, too. And the council of gods must do their part and act upon this. Two worlds. Same answer. Is the government right in both worlds? Not at all. Remember, nothing is perfect, either above ground or below. Showing these two councils (or at least the repercussions of them will help compare and contrast our two worlds).

Is a dystopian story with the world aboveground suffering so badly from the heat, brainstorm what else can be happening in the other world (in this case the Underworld). What other troubles does that world have? Is the rule threatened? Are the boundaries weakened? Is there a mutiny about to break out?

An important part of comparing out two worlds is to maintain a proper balance between them. Both worlds have plot and crises. Both worlds must be given equal page time. Spending too much time in either of the worlds can risk alienating the reader. But . . . for every scene switch, there must be a believable reason. Simply “wanting to visit” is not enough. Why would a character want to escape one world and go to another? What would draw them to do so?

Keep your yin and your yang in alignment.

So that wraps it up for world building and Solstice. Two worlds in turmoil. One girl who can make a difference.

Thanks so much for joining me, and I hope you’re inspired to build some worlds of your own! 


P. J. Hoover is the author of the dystopia/mythology YA book, SOLSTICE (Tor Teen, June 2013), the upcoming Egyptian mythology MG book, TUT (Tor Children’s, Winter 2014), and the middle-grade SFF series, THE FORGOTTEN WORLDS BOOKS (CBAY, 2008-2010). You can read more about her and her books on P. J.’s website or blog.


Jordan Dane said...

Well done. Managing two entwined worlds ane the subplot complexity can't be easy, but it definitely helps with pace. Thanks for all the great tips and thought provoking ideas, Trish.

PJ Hoover said...

Thank you, Jordan! The two worlds definitely added to the complexity of the writing :)
See you at Comic Con!

Jordan Dane said...

I'm excited. It'll be my first Comic Con.