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Writing Insights – First Principles of Worldbuilding

Writing Insights – First Principles of Worldbuilding

Worldbuilding is a key component of genre fiction, and with the new WriteMovies Sci-Fi and Fantasy Award now open, a lot of you will now be hard at work creating new worlds! But how do you do it successfully? Here are what we see as the first principles of great worldbuilding.

  • Create something unique. There’s nothing wrong with writing a traditional sci-fi or fantasy story, but there needs to be something special about it we haven’t seen before. Even just one unique element can be enough – as long as you build the rest of the world around it and maximize its potential.
  • Go deep… but not too deep. The real world is a complex place, and fictional worlds need to be complex too. Otherwise we won’t believe in them! However, you also need to know when to streamline and simplify things. Throw too many ideas at your audience, and they’re just going to get confused and lose track of everything.
  • Avoid exposition. You might be eager to share every last detail about your world, but don’t do it through clunky, unnatural exposition. Instead, incorporate visuals that explain your concepts – and consider whether your audience even needs to know it all. Above all else, avoid the dreaded “infodump” that overwhelms us with information all at once.
  • Use the world in your narrative. Your world is part of your story just as much as the characters, plot points, and dialogue. Everything in it should therefore help tell the story by actively participating in it. It’s not just a backdrop – treat it like a character in itself!
  • Don’t break your own rules. Reality has rules you can’t break; they’re called physics. Your fictional world needs rules too, even if it includes magic or highly advanced technology. And magic should abide by those rules, not be used to break them! If you do, you’ll also be breaking the audience’s suspension of disbelief.

There you have it – our first principles of great worldbuilding. Enter the WriteMovies Sci-Fi and Fantasy Award when your worlds are ready, and show us somewhere we’ve never seen before! There are great prizes on offer, and you also get free, automatic entry to the Spring Screenwriting Contest!

Sci-Fi and Fantasy Award 2020 – 1 Week Extension!

Sci-Fi and Fantasy Award 2020 – 1 Week Extension!

A 1 week extension for our Sci-Fi and Fantasy Award 2020! We always want to give you the help and support you need – and sometimes that’s just 7 more days to fine-tune your script. Submit by Sunday June 7th for your chance to win big!

The winner of this award will receive:

  • Guaranteed pitching to industry
  • Two sets of Development Notes to help take their script to the next level
  • Further advice to fine tune their script from our experts

And all submissions get free entry to the Summer 2020 Writing Contest as well, with the chance to win the Grand Prize of $2000!

Our Development Notes are designed to give you clear, constructive, studio-quality guidance on the current state of your script and what to do next in order for it to fulfil its potential. They’ll give a clear analysis of its strengths and weaknesses, and provide creative suggestions on how to improve it.

We then pitch all our winners to top execs – click HERE to find out more about how we put our scripts to industry, including an extensive industry mailing list and pitch meetings with top producers and studios.

The Sci-Fi and Fantasy Award 2020 extension lasts until Sunday June 7th. Submit today for your chance to win – click HERE!

Sci-Fi and Fantasy Award 2020 – 1 Week Extension!

Sci-Fi and Fantasy Award 2020 deadline – 1 Week to Go!

The final deadline for our Sci-Fi and Fantasy Award 2020 is fast approaching! The winner will receive:

  • Guaranteed pitching to industry
  • Two sets of Development Notes to help take their script to the next level
  • Further advice to fine tune their script from our experts

Plus, all entries to the award automatically receive FREE entry to the Summer 2020 Screenwriting Contest, with the chance to win the Grand Prize of $2000!

The winner of last year’s Sci-Fi and Fantasy Award was THE TIME-TRAP by Mark Flood, which has already received interest from top producers. Don’t miss out on your chance to follow in his footsteps and get your script out there.

The Sci-Fi and Fantasy Award 2020 deadline is THIS SUNDAY, May 31st – make sure you submit by then!

Click HERE to visit the main contest page, where you can find out more about the contest and submit, or click HERE to find out more about and submit to our Summer 2020 Screenwriting Contest!