When I wrote fantasy (and still do from time to time) I created a whole world. I have a map that takes up an entire bedroom wall (depending on the bedroom size) and everything I created was my own imagination. But I had a background to work from that inspired me.
I played an online text based MMORPG called "COSRIN". Looking back, I played that game from the beginning, when I started working for America Online. (I KNOW!? RIGHT!?)
I won't tell you when that started. Just know I'm dawn of the internet old.
I had characters from that game, names changed of course, because I couldn't use 'Treebeard' without getting smacked down from copyrights. But the story was my own. I did keep the background story of most of the other characters I used, with permission. The rest was all me.
Now that I've shifted from fantasy to paranormal/horror, My stories are still my own, but of course I have a plethora of supernatural creatures to build from.
Fair warning: my vampires DO NOT sparkle. My werewolves aren't cute fluffy puppies. My witches can be ruthless. And there are definitely demons and angels.
But what else does this new world, these new stories contain? Real life moments. Real life issues. I wrote a scene where my MC was being bullied and I had a beta reader stop and put the story down because it triggered them. That definitely was NOT my intent or purpose. But, I was also pulling from real life experience.
I definitely have some real life experiences to write about. They say, write what you know, and I do. I also think it's important to include other things that go on in this world that people don't like to talk about.
The problem with not talking about these things? They get swept under the carpet, nothing gets done and people continue to walk around like everything is rainbows and unicorn poo.
My vampires are the ruthless, soulless killers they're supposed to be. They are part of our folklore, as are werewolves and fairies, along with witches and goblins. If you dig deep enough into any culture, they all have their own mythological creatures. Some benevolent and some... not so much.
Cancel culture is going to have fun with me. Bring it on.
I'll also be including a lot of history later on down the line, because a lot of the beings can be immortal and have seen some shit (pardon the language) and it will have affected them as much as anyone else, if not more and in different ways.
I'm sure people are saying that all this supernatural/paranormal/horror is over done, but I have to disagree. Horror and paranormal have been around and don't go in and out of style like other genres. I will say that the creatures definitely do wobble in and out quite a bit, or are overdone. It just takes a different perspective, like... sparkling.
So what do you include in your writing worlds? Do you show up with some real life issues or do you try to make them light? Do you avoid certain subjects like the plague or embrace them? Let me know in the comments! I'd love to hear what you have to say.
You can also find me on Twitter @MelMcC7 and we can discuss it there, as well,.