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World Building: From the Shire to Panem

Date: 4/14/18

Location: Open Book-Loft Classroom

Day of the Week: Saturday

Time: 1:00 - 4:00 pm

Ages: 13-17

Class Level: 13-17

Genre: Children's and Young Adult Literature

• Regular: $52.50
• Member: $47.25
• Low-Income: $36.75

District 13, Hogwarts, Abnegation, Middle Earth. Why do we know all of these settings? In fantasy and science fiction particularly, the world building is instrumental to every other element, as it must draw readers into a setting in which they can fully immerse themselves.

In this class, we will examine a variety of ways to approach world building, such as foreign lands (Middle Earth and The Spine of Eragon), dystopian futures (the Uglies series, Divergent, Hunger Games), parallel worlds (His Dark Materials), and societies hiding right under our dumb, human noses (Percy Jackson, Artemis Fowl, and some book about a kid named Harry Potter). Why are we so captivated by these fictitious environments, our imagination living in them long after we finish the book? I'm still waiting for my owl, and I'm pretty confident that it's coming any day now. 

We will delve into the differences and similarities between fantastical worlds and the aspects that allow them to operate—from language to inventions to social norms—culminating in sketching our own world in which to set a story or novel. The class will rely on student interaction and intensive writing and brainstorming.