It’s virtually impossible to not be new in this new reality that is the pandemic. As difficult as it is—and it is difficult–I’m trying to be new in a positive way. I’m applying that attitude to my health, home, and writing.
The more time that passes the more mixed the results, but I’m getting by.
I’m also trying to apply my positive newness to my WordPress site. Thus far, the results are again mixed.
About a zillion dead links need to come down. Not to mention, it could use a visual redesign. On the positive side, I’ve changed the menu to accommodate adding maps and short stories. There are now four short stories up for readers, each of them exhibiting a different aspect of my writing.
Now, it’s time to turn to maps. Maps, though, are a different beast.
Stories speak for themselves. Readers like them or they don’t. Writers learn from them (for good or bad reasons) or they don’t. Maps posted without explanation or out of context, though, aren’t necessarily understood or appreciated. Too, they’re an opportunity to share some of my mapmaking and worldbuilding knowledge, which is why I won’t put them up and walk away.
Over the last six years I’ve written about a dozen posts that were exclusively about maps, diagrams, or blueprints whether they were elaborate or simple. Those posts are no longer online, though all my posts exist on my computer.
Yes, I save everything.
I briefly considered just reposting those posts in their original form, but they’re dated to a degree and for varying reasons. There’s so much more I’ve learned since some of them were written.
That’s why I’ve decided to begin a series about maps and how they pertain to fantasy and worldbuilding. I have no idea how many posts this will require. Many of the old posts overlapped, but there’s so much that’s happened in the interim.
It’ll be like a journey and I’m always willing to go on one of those.
I intend to, at least briefly, revisit my lifelong love affair with maps and some of the influences that led to what I’ve done. That tale extends all the way to childhood. There are also my early fantasy map efforts from twenty years ago. In more recent years there was the great Ontyre map overhaul that began in 2015. That coincided with making drastic changes to how I write.
If you believe you can’t create a map to aid you while you work then be sure stop by. I’ve kept all my old maps and some of them are pretty awful—yet they worked.
As I progress through the topic and reach maps I want to share I’ll post them on the Map menu.
I’m excited about this series. I’ve needed a creative change. It’s been over a year since I’ve done any substantial map work and I doubt that’s going to change anytime soon. I’ll be editing most of the year, which means I’ll be working with existing maps.
At the same time, having worked with my maps now for a long while, I’ve some new insights as to how well those I’ve created have functioned. I’ve always said, maps are, at the least, an invaluable tool for the writer. Even a simple map can serve a writer well.
In many ways, what makes me a good resource on this topic is because I’m a writer first, mapmaker second. I’m not a cartographer by any stretch of the imagination.
So, I invite you all to take this journey with me again, many of you for the first time. I’m ready to begin, but will restrict myself to publishing my map posts each Thursday so I have time for the editing I’m supposed to be doing.
And so I have ample time to make a decent presentation each week.