Monday, December 17, 2012

Choosing an Exotic Locale by Crista McHugh

One of the fun things about creating a fantasy world is that I get to mix and match different cultures and different worlds to create something new. In A Soul For Chaos, Arden travels to the Gravarian Empire, an exotic world filled with magic and very different from her homeland.

To create a world of contrasts, I cherry picked different things I wanted to incorporate in this world. For example, I pictured the Imperial Palace to resemble the palaces of India.

In contrast to the dry plains of Ranello, I wanted Gravarian to be choking with lush vegetation that flourishes in the humid climate, much like the rainforests in Hawaii.

And I wanted the locals to dress in a way that would make Arden blush—or at least, feel out of her element when she tried to wear their fashions. So I drew inspiration from the bright and colorful fashions of East Africa and India.

Does Gravaria feel exotic yet? Can you feel the humid air on your skin and smell the spices in the air yet?

If you could create a fictional world, where would you draw your inspiration?
About the Author:
Growing up in small town Alabama, Crista relied on story-telling as a natural way for her to pass the time and keep her two younger sisters entertained. Of course, that also means she’s inclined to suffer some of the same maladies that plague many southern writers like overuse of simile and metaphor, exaggeration, melodramatic writing style, and the ever-popular long-winded sentence.
She currently lives in the Audi-filled suburbs of Seattle with her husband and two children, maintaining her alter ego of mild-mannered physician by day while she continues to pursue writing on nights and weekends.
Just for laughs, here are some of the jobs she’s had in the past to pay the bills: barista, bartender, sommelier, stagehand, actress, morgue attendant, and autopsy assistant.
And she’s also a recovering LARPer. (She blames it on her crazy college days)
For the latest updates and answers to any burning questions you have, please check out her webpage.
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