Yes. Building the world of Athule required that I also create different cultures, religions, societies and other features. The key to a good Fantasy tale is to make it believable. Tom Clancy said, “The difference between fiction and reality? Fiction has to make sense.” Readers of Fantasy expect the story to be strange, but it must be possible in the realm of the world in which it exists. This means the world must feel real to the reader. They must be able to see the world–hear it, smell it, feel the wind and rain. To accomplish this I spent a great deal of time researching everything I could find on food; clothing; forms of travel; what trees, birds, animals existed for the area and time period; castles and other structures; common occupations; and hundreds of other facts. I incorporated all this, with some minor modifications as I developed my Fantasy world. To enhance this I even try to keep all the words I use, especially in dialogue, to words that originated before 1600. You will never hear one of my characters say ‘Okay’.
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