Worldbuilding Wednesday – Worldbuilding a Creation Story

Not all fantasy worlds need a specific creation story (or myth) to be written for them. For many — especially those in flash fiction, for instance — there is no need to worldbuild anything much outside of the scope of the story itself. When you get to larger works, which may stretch, over a series, though, you need to know as much about your world as possible. Without succumbing to worldbuilder’s disease, of course!

For Airtha-Eyrassa — the world in which The Ruon Chronicles takes place — I wanted a myth-like feel to the story while staying within the mythology already created for the world. As the creation of Airtha-Eyrassa encompass the whole of the first age of the world (the Age of Twilight), I decided to rather go with a Genesis-like quality (the Bible, not the band :P) rather than, say, a Poetic Edda feel. (Although you should really read the Poetic and/or Prose Edda — it’s fascinating and very entertaining.)

The first verses of Genesis (English Standard Version) read:

In the beginning, God created the heavens and the earth. The earth was without form and void, and darkness was over the face of the deep… And God said, “Let there be light”…

“In the beginning there was nothing, which exploded” (to paraphrase Terry Pratchett), would also not work as I wanted a type of balance between the two, even though I am only really writing it for myself at this stage and this will not actually make up part of the books — I think…

The First Age — The Age of Twilight

In the beginning, when there was only the void and Agrai, the world of Airtha-Eyrassa was created. Agrai, called the One and the Creator by the peoples of Airtha-Eyrassa, created the world and then gave it one sun and one moon.

Then Agrai kindled four great stars from which all other stars in the night sky are descended. These four stars Agrai created to show the people of Airtha-Eyrassa their way by night.

Then Agrai looked towards the world of Airtha-Eyrassa, and saw that the world was entirely covered in water. With a single word Agrai parted the land and the water, just as the sun and the stars had been kindled.

Then Agrai created the plants and animals, filling the land and the waters with them. For an age they grew and lived and, once they had thrived and filled all the lands, the Age of Morning dawned.

Note:

People are only created during the Second Age/Age of Morning. The Third Age is called the Age of Blood and Sorrow (because I’m just such a happy person) and the Fourth Age (in which, amongst others, The Box of Secrets takes place, is called the Age of Renewal.

AE - MPS - August 2017


5 thoughts on “Worldbuilding Wednesday – Worldbuilding a Creation Story

    1. Thank you! I have a great love of mythology and folklore and I think this just spill over into my writing whether I want it to or not!
      The world has many creation myths – with many cultures having their own myths. Here’s a link to a Wikipedia page where you can read some of them – https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Category:Creation_myths
      I quite like getting to read the texts themselves as well (like the Eddas) even if I have to do so in translation. The Kalevala, for instance, is also beautiful but, unfortunately I do not know a word of Finnish! Here’s a link to a post which I wrote about some mythology books you may also find interesting –
      https://maraiscarin.wordpress.com/2015/02/11/worldbuilding-wednesday-resources-for-mythology-and-folklore/
      As for why I chose a monotheistic myth – I guess that it was on one hand the easiest for me to do (as I am a Christian), but I also did not want the actions of the gods to detract from the story I wanted to write. (You just have to look at Classical mythology or Norse mythology to see what shenanigans the gods can get up to!) And I did not want a whole pantheon just sitting around and sometimes perhaps smiting someone with a lightning bolt. Although I can think of a few people I would like to see being smote… 😛
      This is not to say, however, that all the peoples of Aitha-Eyrassa will believe in exactly the same way, and this will also come into play during the series of stories I am planning. 😀

      Like

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