Dystopian World Building Worksheet – Part III

This is the third in a series of posts about the world-building process I’m revisiting as I work on edits for my 2012 dystopian novel EYE OF THE STORM. Part one of my dystopian world building worksheet– with an introduction to the concept of world building — is here.  Part two is here. And here’s part three…

What social ladders exist? Who has power and why? What are the tangible symbols of that power? Who is at the bottom of this society’s social ladder, and why?

What kind of ethnic diversity exists?

What role, if any, does religion play in this society? What are the dominant religions? What religions are marginalized?

What do international/inter-group relations look like? What wars are going on?  What countries or groups are fighting, and why? Which ones are allies? Which are enemies?

What climate and weather patterns are prevalent?

What does agriculture look like? Where do people get food?

What foods are considered standard fare? What foods are delicacies, and why?


In working on EOTS, a book with monster tornadoes, that weather question was obviously one that I spent a lot of time with before I ever started writing. But I’m going far beyond climate and weather in this new round of world-building (Can I still call it world building? I did that before I wrote…  Perhaps this is world-remodeling.)  And it’s interesting to me to explore how that climate & weather issue would shape the rest of this society’s world.

More world building questions soon.  Back to the colored markers & Post-It Notes now…
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