Individual Worldbuilding for Creative Writers


     “Yes, I am off in my own world…because I built one. Many writers and game designers create elaborate fantasy universes with fashions, sports and games, folk expressions, and anything else you can imagine. I wrote my first novel at sixteen, and then created a map and more traditions and rules for my world. Back two was much more complex. Plus, I teach worldbuilding at conventions. To help your creative projects (already started or future) or just for fun, we’ll each make a cool world of our own.” ~Prof. Valerie



    Step 1: Register Your Student

    Step 2: Enroll Your Registered Student

    InstructorProf. Valerie Frankel
    Content LevelsGrades 5-6 • Upper Elementary
    Grades 6-7 • Middle School
    Grades 7-8 • Junior High
    Course Length8 Weeks
    Live Webinars Held OnWednesdays, 1:00 - 1:50 PM Pacific - See below for webinar dates

    Oz, Narnia, Wonderland, Star Trek or Star Wars…Build your own fantasy kingdom or space empire!

    If you’re working on writing short stories or a novel or a screenplay or are designing a computer game or RPG, this is the class for you. With guidance, you’ll learn to add customs, pop culture, and a suggestion of your own language if you like to your new or in-process universe.

    We’ll learn how mountains and oceans affect trade, and how to build a realistic magic system, how to imagine furniture for characters that are truly alien, and how different speeds work in space or in a horse and wagon.

    This class works well as a continuation of the Write and Publish Your Own Novel class or can start young writers off before creative writing in the fall.

    Course Webinar Dates:

    • Wednesday, May 29
    • Wednesday, June 5
    • Wednesday, June 12
    • Wednesday, June 19
    • Wednesday, June 26
    • Wednesday, July 3
    • Wednesday, July 10
    • Wednesday, July 17

    What to expect in the Required section in the classroom each week:

    • Assignments to write a few pages of notes, bullet points or paragraphs
    • Weekly reading

    What to expect in the Highly Suggested & Optional sections in the classroom each week:

    • Age-appropriate supplemental novel reading
    • Map or location drawing
    • Curated resources, including websites & videos, are provided to excite learners and to add depth to the subject matter.
    • Additional lessons and resources to help students get more out of the lessons and pursue their chosen styles of writing and world-creation.

    What to expect during the weekly webinar:

    • Weekly webinars are 50 minutes long. Webinars are recorded and are available for students with schedule conflicts.
    • In-class workshops as well as lessons on analysis and real-world history and how to apply techniques to their own writing or creative projects.
    • Active Participation (via the microphone and chat) is encouraged in online class discussions and also during lectures.

    Before taking this course, students should be able to: 

    • Read at a solid 5th-grade level or above.
    • Type fluently.
    • Write a paragraph independently.

    Students should be willing to:

    • Have a desire to create an imaginary world, whether for fiction writing, game design, or fun. (A world or stories and games that have already been started are great, as we’ll be increasing the richness of a new or preexisting setting as you choose.)
    • Actively participate (via the microphone) in the class discussion.
    • Encourage class discussion by adding their questions/ideas in the chat window during the webinar.
    • Workshop others’ creations in a supportive and helpful manner.
    • Respond with positive and encouraging comments on their classmates’ posts in the classroom forums.

    Required books & materials:

    • None.