• Character Development,  Travel,  World building,  Writing

    Mapping the World through Experiences

    It is no strange concept that places leave impressions on us. We form deep connections to the places where we’ve been, places where we’ve had deep experiences. The same can be said for our characters in the stories we write. What places matter to them? How do they map their worlds? I’d like to start by illustrating how I mapped my own world, growing up, and how my experiences in different places have contributed to who I am today. Then I’ll move on to discuss how we can apply this type of thinking to characterization and world building. My Story When I was young I mapped my world by the…

  • Travel,  Writing

    Home is Where I Write

    I did not choose travel. Travel happened to me frequently when I was young, most often without my permission. Three cities. Ten houses. Two middle schools. Three high schools. A thousand different phone numbers. In the final days of ninth grade I came home and found my mom in tears. Crying because we were being evicted and we had to be out the next morning. I couldn’t understand her tears. Even then, at 14, I was too practical. There was work to be done, moving everything into storage in one night. And after, I had exams to study for. I went to my room and packed my things, then moved…