Margie Lawson

Make your writing soar


World Genesis: World Building 101

Whether your manuscript is Sci-Fi, Urban Fantasy, High Fantasy, Steampunk, a mash-up, or something in-between, worldbuilding is a key element to a successful and immersive story.

In this four-week course you will go over the various aspects to building a solid world, from where and when the story is set to the characters that populate it, the technology (and magic) they use, to their language, government, culture, and beyond.

What You’ll Learn:

  • You’ll learn how worldbuilding works for different types of stories, how to research and craft them, then create a solid world relevant to your project. As we go you can receive feedback regarding the elements you’ve created.
  • You’ll learn how to incorporate that world into your manuscript and how to avoid common pitfalls, such as the dreaded info dump.
  • Toward the end, students will have the opportunity (if they wish) to submit pages for private feedback from the instructor.

Who Should Take This Course:

  • This class is suitable for beginning, intermediate, and advanced writers of kidlit, YA, and adult manuscripts.
  • You could have the barest idea for a world or a written manuscript where the world needs some fleshing out—and everything in-between.
  • While this class is aimed at developing an extensive world for a fantasy, urban fantasy, or sci-fi story, much of the information is applicable across genres.


  • Lesson 1—Worldbuilding Basics
  • Lesson 2—Worldbuilding Elements
  • Lesson 3—Let's start at the very beginning: Where (and when) is your world and What is your world like? 
  • Lesson 4 — What makes your world different?
  • Lesson 5—Where in the world is everything? The geography of your world.
  • Lesson 6—Flora and Fauna
  • Technology, Magic, or Both?
  • Lesson 7—Technology
  • Lesson 8—Magic and Magical Creatures
  • Lesson 9—The People: Who lives in your world?
  • Lesson 10—Just Another Day
  • Lesson 11—How does it run? Governments, Militaries, and More.
  • Lesson 12—It's all about the money: Economy, Transportation, Trade, and Jobs
  • Lesson 13—What makes a civilization: Religion, Language, Medicine, Art, and Culture
  • Lesson 14—What's your world like *right now*?
  • Writing Exercise—A Day in the Life
  • Lesson 15—Your World as a Character
  • Lesson 16—Pulling it all together: Integrating your world into your story
  • Lesson 17—Avoiding Common Pitfalls
  • Lesson 18—Getting Organized: Story bibles, filling in the gaps, and other details
  • Lesson 19—Wrap up

Class is suitable for all levels from novice to expert and is open to all genres.


Suzanne Lazear

Suzanne Lazear is the author of the young adult steampunk fairytale series THE AETHER CHRONICLES and the new adult elfpunk series THE SECRET LIVES OF ROCKSTARS. An avid baker and crafter, she lives in Southern California with her daughter, husband, a cockatiel, and a small army of stuffed animals. Learn more about her at




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