This is # 3 of a 5-part blog series on how to make fantasy and science-fiction world's feel real. It's based off of a science fiction and fantasy world-building prompt session I ran at this year's Ladder Literary Conference.
About this World-Building Series
When we think of a fantastic world, we often think of the broad strokes, but it’s the small details of the world that make it come to life. Those little details are what we’re going to focus on in this blog series.
Fantasy Food from Scratch
Astronomer Carl Sagan once said: “If you wish to make an apple pie from scratch, you must first invent the universe.” So, I like to invent a universe for my apple pie.
Thinking through how characters perform mundane activities creates a realistic foundation. When she’s world-building, Author Fran Wilde asks, “How do my characters boil water?” How food is secured and prepared is especially vital for high fantasy and dystopian worlds because their resources and utensils probably vary significantly from what we eat and use to cook. Preparing food also stimulates more sensory details than almost any other activity.
More than Stew and Salad
Food writing engages all the senses and is essential when it comes to the fantastic. I use the food taste and smell to remind my readers of the familiar and to enhance the exotic aspects of my world. Fantasy is filled with rustic stews and hearty bread and future worlds with instant convenience foods, like rehydratable salad. A world’s unique food and preparation methods could make it stand apart.
The Prompt: Prepare a meal in your fantastic or futuristic world.