Jill Williamson is a fantasy writer, and I just loved her Storyworld First book.
I’ve been looking for something like it for some time, and was delighted to stumble across this. It’s exactly what I was looking for. Something focused on world building for fantasy. She uses examples from Oz, Harry Potter, The Lord of the Rings, Fablehaven, and Star Wars.
She goes into great detail about all the different things you can consider when building a fantasy world: races, species, religions, government, and more. She does bring up a lot of questions to make you think, and not all of those questions are given a definitive answer, but that’s kind of the point. There isn’t really a recipe to follow to create an engaging world of your own, but you do need to think about different aspects, get creative and flesh out your worlds. Readers hoping for more of a step-by-step guide might be disappointed if they aren’t willing to put in the creative effort.
She does use her own books as examples a lot, which might irk some readers, but it also makes sense as her own work is the work she is most familiar with.
I really enjoyed Storyworld First and I’m sure I will reference it a lot in the future. I wish there was an audiobook available, but I know those are expensive to produce.