Day 14: Maps

See the list of questions for 30 Days of Writing.


How do you map out locations, if needed? Do you have any to show us?


This is a tough one, as I haven’t fiddled much with cartography. So far, I’ve only created two fantasy worlds that, in my opinion, needed maps. Cahn-Abél doesn’t have a map, though I have one in my head. I didn’t think it was really necessary to draw it out.

The unnamed world in my unnamed novel, however, does have a map. I’ve tried drawing it out, both by hand and on the computer, but since I am both a perfectionist and a terrible artist, I have no finished product to show for.

The geographical features of Natiae’s world play both a concrete and an abstract part. The forest separating the Sanctuary from the rest of the world serves a practical purpose of protection, but it also serves as a symbol of Natiae’s tangled thoughts as she flees her home. The mountains nearby hide small the human villages and ports from the Elari, but they also symbolize the seemingly insurmountable challenges ahead for Natiae. The ocean beyond is also a symbol of Natiae’s opening mind, and there will be a river later to show Natiae’s progression through her journey.

In other words, not only are the geographical features of this map physical trials for my characters, but they also serve as reminders of the mental and emotional trials they must overcome. This will be subtle symbolism that I probably won’t mention at all in the novel, but it will help me create the map and portray the feelings going through Natiae’s heart at each stop on her journey.

Cluttered Forest

A forest thick with trees and undergrowth, no path or escape in sight. You know not what lies within or what lies beyond. You only know what lies behind, and you refuse to turn around. So you walk on, through a forest as tangled as your thoughts.


Tomorrow’s question: Tell us about a writer you admire, whether professional or not!

About Squishy

Writer, dancer, gamer, and admirer of all that is beautiful.

Posted on September 23, 2010, in Ishy Writes! and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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