Best way to plan out an Universe

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Best way to plan out an Universe

Post by Vedic on 2011-08-31, 06:29

Ok so I generally I have bad luck making stories mainly cause I fail to make the universe...and when I do it's jut an collection of thoughts that I can't use practically.

So I ask you guys, what's the best way to plan out an Universe for an story?

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Re: Best way to plan out an Universe

Post by Darkwing on 2011-08-31, 09:20

Well, that in and of itself is the conflict. Are you making a story, or a universe. See if you focus on making all the technical details correct, the story gets lost. I've always been of the opinion that the story is more important than the universe (with rare exceptions such as video/console games in which the tech and details are key).

On that note, I've also found that for me, the story is what inspires the universe. For instance, with the whole Darkwing universe, most of that didn't come about until a lot of the story had been written. Once it had though, details become more present and the universe was inspired. Any time I try and invent the universe and then write the story, it doesn't come out so well.

Another good example is ELZ. Krunchy had developed a form of universe for that, but was very reminiscent of several sci-fi franchises. We did re-discuss the universe, but only in relation to the story. If it wasn't relevant to the story now or later, it got ignored and I would say ELZ is one awesome universe.

That's my few 8:30 AM thoughts for you Smile

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Re: Best way to plan out an Universe

Post by Vedic on 2011-08-31, 10:26

your 8:30 am thoughts, are better than, my any time of the day thoughts.

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Re: Best way to plan out an Universe

Post by Darkwing on 2011-08-31, 10:32

Woot, I have purpose!

But anyways, I think what really hitches you up is you get stuck on trivial details that have little to no relevance to anything. At least that's the sense I get from your RPing. Though details are important to a point (primarily for continuity or just common sense purposes) the story usually and IMO should almost always rank as being the more important element, so if a starship having 23 decks instead of 24 is the type of things you're thinking about, then you're going to miss the story, because the story in a lot of ways doesn't care, unless it was earlier stated that they went to deck 24 which was the last deck, then you have to be careful of correcting yourself later on because now it's a plot hole.

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Re: Best way to plan out an Universe

Post by Vedic on 2011-08-31, 10:40

yeah that's generally what's gets me when I make an story, trivia... I make way to much of it. I dunno why, I just add it.

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Re: Best way to plan out an Universe

Post by Darkwing on 2011-08-31, 10:51

Well here's how I usually start, before I even begin or at least at the beginning of writing.

Begin with a bsic history. Know some of the major events that took place before your story, what will take place during and some of what will happen after. For instance, DW:C has a rough outline of what takes place approximately 15 years after the events of Pillars of the Universe.

Do be aware that a lot of history will be inspired as you write the actual story and come up with ideas, this is one good reason as to why you should do re-writes, because you will most likely run into a conflict of ideas because you have too many that don't work with earlier portions of your story.

Now the history inspires the tech, at least in a broad sense. Is it post apocalyptic? Industrial? Once you have what style it is, then you can work on crafting some of the broader aspects. Are the characters on a warship? Freighter? Ocean Liner? This is when you run into some of the medium sized details that will be relevant to the story. If on a warship, how strong? (Doesn't need to be specific at this point) Do the characters get into a fight using this ship? This is when you would need to know how strong the ship is. On that note, if the ship is never used for combat, don't bother developing the combat stats, it's irrelevant, wastes time and takes away from your time developing the story.

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