Welcome to this week’s Craft Post. I hope everyone is having a great writing week. For those who may be new, since February, we have been working through a massive series on Worldbuilding. We have completed five sub-series in the series thus far. Today we will start the sixth. If you would like to get caught up, you can find all of the posts under their sub-series, under the Worldbuilding link in the toolbar.

What is a city? Go on define a city for me. Got nothing? Same here. When we think of a city, places like New York City, Boston, Paris, Tokyo, etc come to mind. What do these places have in common? They are all huge. When I asked you to define a city, maybe you used one of those cities or others like them as part of your definition. Maybe not. I actually looked up the population requirements to be considered a city. I was surprised and I think you will be too.

“The minimum population required to constitute a city differs between countries. In the United States, an urban area is defined as a settlement where 2,500 or more people reside.” Reference.com

Yep, only twenty-five hundred people are needed to be considered a city. Now, you may be thinking this is wrong. Nope. After doing a bit more searching, I found that there really is no set population. Have you ever been driving on back roads and come into a small area where they welcome to what you would think is a town actually says city? This is the reason why. I did find this interesting breakdown of town all the way to a huge city on a forum.

10,000-25,000 Small town (no metro)
25,000-50,000 Mid-sized town (no metro)
100,000-250,000 Large town (metro)
250,000-500,000 Huge town
500,000-1,000,000 Small city
1,000,000-3,000,000 Mid-sized city
3,000,000-7,000,000 Large city
7,000,000+ Huge city


What it comes down to, is everyone has a different thought on what a city is and how many people live there. When it comes to your world, you should define this stuff for yourself.  Here’s the best thing about this. You don’t have to hold true to your definitions. What do I mean?  I mean is that you can define a city for one kingdom or continent and another way for another place. Or, you could even have people from a large town and small city argue over if the town is a city or not. It’s the little things like this that help flesh out your world.

While I haven’t done this yet, I fully plan to do it. It is just easier to have set number for these settlements when you start planning out the places where your inhabitants will live. Then completely mess with them.

That is all for this week. If you are wondering why such a short post, it is because I figure it would be easier to talk about what city really is now than it would be later on. As of this moment, I am seeing two more posts in this sub-series. Where Settlements form and Formation of Settlements. Check back on Monday for this week’s Weekly Writing Wrap-up. You can find me on Twitter @timgreenebooks.



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