Tuesday, July 20, 2010

GUEST: Isabel Roman

Today my guest is Isabel Roman... The book sounds wonderful, and I'm sure you'll enjoy learning more about this talented author! Welcome Isabel...

World Building

Things you need in your world-first, you have to figure out that you want to create a world. It’s like a flow chart, one leads to two, or sometimes three depending on your answer. Follow the arrows, and you’ll have a great world. Don’t follow them, and confusion and delay ensue.

1. What is the setting? It’s most important, whether it’s 1882 Philadelphia or 2002 Philadelphia. Special government? Particular society? Is what you’re building (vamps, magickers, whatever) public knowledge like in True Blood or hidden like in the Buffy verse?

2. Your verse. Are you writing straight history, alternate history, vampires in historical or modern times? Magickers in any time—what do they do, who are they? Very important to know these things before you get going. It’s a pain in the ass to change them later.

3. Continuity. Don’t change things between the first half of the book and second. (See #6)

4. Characters: what are their special ability? Do they have one? What are they trying to do and with what?

5. The Bible: For example: Contemporary alternate history vampire world. Define central characters; here it’ll be your vamps. Do they have special needs or abilities not the traditional vamp needs or abilities? Figure out if the World needs anything unique to accommodate those needs/abilities.

6. Remember all this. No forgetting and fudging it later. Star Trek had The Nitpicker's Guide for Next Generation Trekkers where they picked all the problems each episode had either within a specific episode or overall in the larger Trek universe. (And yes, I did have them! I’m such a geek.) Ah, to be big enough to have a bestselling book nitpicking all your mistakes. Move over JK Rowling and Trek! Here we come!

This is your verse. This is your world. This is where your story, be it one or a series of a dozen will inhabit. Don’t forget what you said HERE so it’s the same THERE. Whatever you put in, broad or specific, it’s part of the world, the characters. There’s no need to explain it, your readers are smart enough to get it.

Read Dark Desires of the Druids: Sex & Subterfuge available now in bookstores! And be sure to check out Isabel’s free story!


A master magicker, Morgana Blackthorne has a tenuous hold on her following. When a strange Englishman arrives on her doorstep with news of other druidic magickers, and magicker problems, she’s intrigued but suspicious. There hasn’t been contact between the American and European druids in over a hundred years. Plus she has her own worries and doesn’t need the handsome earl adding to them.

Lucien, Earl of Granville, left England to seek out the Blackthorne Druid line and discover what they’ve been up to since contact was lost. Once he and Morgana meet, their mutual attraction distracts him from his purpose. Embroiled in her problems, he finds himself more concerned with her welfare than is practical for a passing affair.

When I invited you into my bed, it never occurred to me I wouldn’t want you to leave.
There are darker forces at work and the hunger of a weak magicker desperate for power. Will Lucien convince Morgana of his true feelings before things spiral out of control? Or will the surrounding subterfuge tear them apart?


“Lucien Harrington,” Jacobs, her butler, intoned, “the Earl of Granville.”

Smiling, Morgana swept out of the circle, stepping into the foyer, and greeted her guest. His timing was off, but as the magicker she knew him to be, not suspect.

“Welcome, Lord Granville,” she said, offering a slight curtsy.

He was tall, with dark blond hair, dark blue eyes, and a sharp nose over which he looked down at her. Her eyes traveled over his face, down his body, clothed in immaculately tailored Savile Row, back to his face. Arousal pooled hot in her belly.

She’d never wanted any man. Yet Morgana wanted Lord Granville. Her skin prickled at his nearness, her womb clenched with want.

Forcing her mind off his body, she studied his face. Briefly, want flashed in his eyes and she smiled a truly wicked smile at him. It was gone as fast as it’d shone and she returned to studying him. There was grief hidden deep in his eyes, along with suspicion and weariness. Tilting her head, she wondered what caused those emotions. Suspicion she could easily understand. It’d been more than a hundred and thirty years since their families had any contact. Though, since he’d sought her out, she should be more suspicious of him.

“Mistress Blackthorne,” he bowed over her offered hand. Flicking a glance behind her, he said, “I hope I’m not interrupting.”

“Not at all,” Morgana smiled. She could all but feel David’s displeasure. Suppressing a giddy smile, she took Lord Granville’s arm and led him into the parlor. “We’re about to begin the New Moon Ritual. Do you still practice it in England?”

Looking up at him with guileless eyes, she waited for his confusion, gratified when it sparked briefly in those bottomless depths. Damn them all. She could be as gracious as she liked, but in the end, resentment bubbled to the surface. They’d abandoned her ancestors to indentured servitude and hadn’t bothered to contact any of them since.

“I’m afraid we lost that custom when we lost the valuable Blackthorne line.”

Morgana raised her eyebrow at him as they entered the parlor. Wasn’t he the diplomat?

“Would you care to join the ritual, Lord Granville?”

He bowed again and smiled. “It would be my pleasure, Mrs. Blackthorne.”

Visit Isabel's website


  1. Hi, and thanks for having me today!

  2. OMG! This sounds SO complicated! I'd never be able to keep track of it all! Probably why I'm not a writer, just a scientist.

    Kudos to anyone who can keep this stuff straight - I'm in awe.
    Book sounds uber cool!
    LJ x

  3. I make glossaries / lists, so I can keep my 'verse straight. What makes it tough, usually only the writer can edit for that sort of thing.

  4. M Pax, yeah, you're right. Only the creator of the verse (*G*) can know what truly happens, or can and can't. Does make it difficult for critique partners or editors.

    Lisa J, not too complicated. It's all about the proper tools. And keeping track of where you put them all!

  5. Hi Isabel. Following your blog tour. I really enjoyed this post. I have heard authors talk about word building & you are the first one to realy explain it. Better understanding now. I really loved your book excerpt.
    Sue B


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