History That Never Was

Home of Dawn Vogel: Writer, Historian, Geek

Writing Tools: World Roulette

| July 19, 2021

I’ve accumulated a large collection of card-based writing tools, each of which is useful to different parts of my writing process. So I’ve decided to do a series of posts about the various decks I own and how I use them in my writing. I’ve talked previously about World Roulette as a worldbuilding tool, which is […]

World-Building Recommendation: World Roulette

| February 24, 2021

One of my recent Kickstarter rewards was the World Roulette Deck from Light Grey Art Lab. It’s a deck meant to assist in world building for creative projects, with a really interesting setup on the individual cards, which are meant to be stacked and layered in interesting combinations as you’re creating a world. As the […]

Awesome Find: World Roulette

| September 9, 2020

I LOVE things that allow for random idea generation, so I’m super excited about World Roulette. It’s part art book and part advice on world building. But there’s also a deck of world building cards with instructions on how to make infinite combinations with those cards. And one can never have too many sets of […]

Borrowing from Yourself

| July 20, 2020

If you’re inspired to write a short story that isn’t slated for anything in particular, are you tempted to build a new world, or set your story in a world you’ve already created? If you’ve already got a world that you’ve created, it’s entirely likely that there are potential stories that you haven’t gotten to […]

When the Clothes Make the Story

| January 27, 2020

In one of the games I play, which is a sci-fi heist game, we’ve got a couple of characters who fancy themselves as fashion designers. I threw out the challenge that my character wanted a dress that mashes up Sarah’s dress from Labyrinth with rutilated quartz (as pictured here). I could envision exactly what I […]

Anthropology and World Building

| July 22, 2019

There are many ways in which anthropological studies can help authors with their world-building. This lengthy and detailed review of a book about anthropology includes many bits of information that an author could use when they’re considering questions of worldbuilding, including cultures, learning, and more!  

Shade and Light in Worldbuilding

| May 27, 2019

When you’re world building, how much thought do you give to places that have shade and places that are brightly lit? And how do your characters react to the same? In this article, which talks about the lack of shade in Los Angeles, and how it is a marker of economic disparity, there are all […]

Fun for Friday: Color Etymology

| January 11, 2019

Why doesn’t anything rhyme with purple? Or orange? It might have to do with the origins of those words. This article on Gizmodo talks about the etymology of colors, or how they got their English names. But did you know that not all languages have words for every color? And there’s also the belief that […]

Culture Building

| July 23, 2018

I came across this graphic (rendered at larger than my normal graphic size here to make it more legible) related to the aspects of culture that are easy and difficult to see. It was originally posted by a music teacher talking about multicultural classrooms. But on Twitter, Fonda Lee pointed out how useful it could […]

August recap

| September 3, 2013

By the numbers: Stories out at the beginning of the month: 3 Acceptances received: 0 Rejections received: 2 Stories withdrawn: 0 Resubmissions: 3 New Submissions: 1 Stories out at the end of the month: 5 And we’re back in the short story saddle, with a new story finished, polished, and submitted! On top of that, […]