Marie Brennan is creating New Worlds: essays on worldbuilding
71
patrons
$269
per month
Step into another world . . .

Fascinating worlds are a huge part of the draw for fantasy and science fiction. Not just a kingdom with magic, but a kingdom shaped by the presence of magic. Not just a galaxy with aliens, but a galaxy with alien customs for your characters to screw up. A chance to get outside the familiar routine of your normal existence and imagine a different way of living.

. . . or build your own

My essays here explore different facets of worldbuilding -- including some many authors never even think to pay attention to. I got most of the way to a Ph.D. in anthropology, archaeology, and folklore before I left graduate school to write fantasy full-time, so this is me putting on my Anthropologist Hat and nerding out about one of the things I love most in the world. We cover everything from climate to coinage, from religion to residence patterns. Illustrative examples come from pretty much anywhere I've ever read about or taken a class on, which includes pre-Colombian Mesoamerica, Viking Age Scandinavia, Japan from the Heian to Meiji periods, pre-Roman Egypt, republican and imperial Rome, the Pueblo cultures of the American Southwest, Shang Dynasty China, the Islamic caliphates, pre-colonial West Africa, Iron Age Ireland, the Polynesian Pacific, England from about 1500 onward, and more. If you're a writer interested in adding depth and breadth to your own fiction, or just someone else who thinks the endless creativity of the human species is awesome, I hope you'll find things of interest here.

What does this Patreon produce?

I write a minimum of four essays on worldbuilding topics each month, which are posted to the Book View Cafe blog. Patrons receive a notification each time a new essay goes live, along with a photograph from my travels around the world (which cover not just a fair swath of Europe but Costa Rica, Israel, Turkey, India, and Japan) -- think of it as visual reference and/or inspiration. The photographs and additional material are available to patrons only, depending on your level of support and my total funding.

At the end of each year of the project I revise the essays and gather them into a book, which is sent as an early release to patrons at the $3 tier and above (including past patrons who supported me during that year). Two of these are available for purchase now: New Worlds, Year One and New Worlds, Year Two.

How does our support help?

The kinds of books I read for research are often not available from the public library, even with inter-library loan to help. In order to get really substantive material on a given topic -- not just the kind of thing written for a popular audience -- I often need to buy books online, which can run fifty dollars or more a pop if the text is academic enough. Either that, or I need to pay for access to a university library system (which is one of my goals in the left-hand sidebar). Your support therefore helps me go on educating myself about these subjects -- and that means I can write both better fiction, and better essays here.

Where can I find more details on the different reward levels?

Right here!
Tiers
Vision Builder
$1 or more per month
Receive one photograph with each essay posted, taken from one of my trips around the world.
Book Builder
$3 or more per month
As Vision Builder, plus receive a copy of the ebooks when they are complete, in the format of your choice.
Topic Builder
$5 or more per month

As Book Builder, plus steer the conversation by voting in a monthly poll on what topics I should address next.

Extra Builder
$10 or more per month
As above, plus receive an extra, non-public essay each month with a behind-the-scenes look at the worldbuilding in my own work.
World Builder
$25 or more per month only 8 left
As Extra Builder, plus send me a question about worldbuilding (in your own work, or someone else's) and I'll provide individual feedback. Guidelines apply. Feedback can be private or, with patron permission, made into a post.
Story Builder
$50 or more per month only 5 left
All the rewards of the Extra Builder, plus send me a piece of your own fiction (subject to guidelines) and receive a critique in return.
Goals
$269 of $300 per month
I'll host a Google Hangout every quarter for my patrons, where we can have a more freeform conversation about worldbuilding in specific and writing in general. The hangouts will be hosted at different times on a rotating schedule so that patrons in various time zones will have the opportunity to attend.
5 of 7
Step into another world . . .

Fascinating worlds are a huge part of the draw for fantasy and science fiction. Not just a kingdom with magic, but a kingdom shaped by the presence of magic. Not just a galaxy with aliens, but a galaxy with alien customs for your characters to screw up. A chance to get outside the familiar routine of your normal existence and imagine a different way of living.

. . . or build your own

My essays here explore different facets of worldbuilding -- including some many authors never even think to pay attention to. I got most of the way to a Ph.D. in anthropology, archaeology, and folklore before I left graduate school to write fantasy full-time, so this is me putting on my Anthropologist Hat and nerding out about one of the things I love most in the world. We cover everything from climate to coinage, from religion to residence patterns. Illustrative examples come from pretty much anywhere I've ever read about or taken a class on, which includes pre-Colombian Mesoamerica, Viking Age Scandinavia, Japan from the Heian to Meiji periods, pre-Roman Egypt, republican and imperial Rome, the Pueblo cultures of the American Southwest, Shang Dynasty China, the Islamic caliphates, pre-colonial West Africa, Iron Age Ireland, the Polynesian Pacific, England from about 1500 onward, and more. If you're a writer interested in adding depth and breadth to your own fiction, or just someone else who thinks the endless creativity of the human species is awesome, I hope you'll find things of interest here.

What does this Patreon produce?

I write a minimum of four essays on worldbuilding topics each month, which are posted to the Book View Cafe blog. Patrons receive a notification each time a new essay goes live, along with a photograph from my travels around the world (which cover not just a fair swath of Europe but Costa Rica, Israel, Turkey, India, and Japan) -- think of it as visual reference and/or inspiration. The photographs and additional material are available to patrons only, depending on your level of support and my total funding.

At the end of each year of the project I revise the essays and gather them into a book, which is sent as an early release to patrons at the $3 tier and above (including past patrons who supported me during that year). Two of these are available for purchase now: New Worlds, Year One and New Worlds, Year Two.

How does our support help?

The kinds of books I read for research are often not available from the public library, even with inter-library loan to help. In order to get really substantive material on a given topic -- not just the kind of thing written for a popular audience -- I often need to buy books online, which can run fifty dollars or more a pop if the text is academic enough. Either that, or I need to pay for access to a university library system (which is one of my goals in the left-hand sidebar). Your support therefore helps me go on educating myself about these subjects -- and that means I can write both better fiction, and better essays here.

Where can I find more details on the different reward levels?

Right here!

Recent posts by Marie Brennan

Tiers
Vision Builder
$1 or more per month
Receive one photograph with each essay posted, taken from one of my trips around the world.
Book Builder
$3 or more per month
As Vision Builder, plus receive a copy of the ebooks when they are complete, in the format of your choice.
Topic Builder
$5 or more per month

As Book Builder, plus steer the conversation by voting in a monthly poll on what topics I should address next.

Extra Builder
$10 or more per month
As above, plus receive an extra, non-public essay each month with a behind-the-scenes look at the worldbuilding in my own work.
World Builder
$25 or more per month only 8 left
As Extra Builder, plus send me a question about worldbuilding (in your own work, or someone else's) and I'll provide individual feedback. Guidelines apply. Feedback can be private or, with patron permission, made into a post.
Story Builder
$50 or more per month only 5 left
All the rewards of the Extra Builder, plus send me a piece of your own fiction (subject to guidelines) and receive a critique in return.