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Complete originality is a bit of a wild goose chase. Neither Lord of the Rings, nor Game of Thrones nor Star Wars takes place in a completely original setting. They've all borrowed extensively from various sources. LOTR is based in large part on old myths, GOT is a fairly typical medieval-themed fantasy world and Star Wars is quite consciously a fairy ...


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To build on Chris Sunami's answer, you don't want a universe or setting that is entirely foreign, lest your potential readers not find a way to identify with it even subconsciously. But given your examples, I definitely understand. I would say the most important aspect of a new setting is immersion; the more you can develop the world and characters, the ...


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To my mind, creating an original world that still makes sense to the reader is best done by coming up with one central idea about this world and then deriving most of the other details from this idea. In Science Fiction this is often a technological development that may or may not be already starting in our days. For example in Altered Carbon one such idea ...


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I'm going to take my own advice, and answer your question from a writing perspective, which (I think) boils down to: How original must my setting be, in order for my story to be worthy of readers' time? To start, try looking at this question and answers. One of the drawbacks of an original setting is that you've got a lot of explaining to do. Next, ...


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For me, writing boils down to resonating with myself and my audience which means both good news and bad news for anyone looking to avoid cliches: Bad news: Cliches are the typical way to resonate with your audience What makes cliches so common is that they work well and things that work well tend to be foundational. Stray too far from the accepted ...


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Developing your world around a central concept or thought experiment that you want to explore is a tried and tested method, as is basing it on the needs of your plot and extrapolating from there. Both might, however, fail to provide you with inspiration for the details that are not directly connected to that central theme, in which case you might end up with ...


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i am new to this so treat me kindly- the things that you need to worry about, are three factors to gain originality according to me: magic/tech/maybe both: have something new and interesting- something that people are willing and eager to read more about and understand this new system that you are bringing alive. in case of tech, just because the tech is ...



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