Welcome to this week’s Craft Post. I hope everyone has had a good writing week. For those who are new, we have been going through a massive series on Worldbuilding. You can find the whole series thus far under the Worldbuilding link in the toolbar. Today we will be covering the second post in the new sub-series on Civilizations. You can find the first post here.

Now that we know a city can be whatever we decide it is, the question is where do civilizations tend to show up? There is only one way to know for sure and that is studying history. There is a major historical event or should I say information that led to the formation of permanent settlements. What was it? Guess! Either you guess right or wrong. The answer: Farming. Learning how to grow and harvest food allowed the early man to start to settle in one place instead roaming the lands.

In that, we have the answer to our question, to where settlements tend to show up. They show up in areas that are fertile. You can’t have a lot of people living in an area where you can’t grow crows post-Neolithic Revolution. Look at where early settlements were located. The fertile crescent in Mesopotamia, China, Eygpt, and India. These are only a few areas. When you are developing the history of your world, and if you cover the area this age, you should remember this.

While we have our answer, we still really don’t have our answer. Settlements appear elsewhere after hundreds of years adapting. Eventually, whatever race or races that mostly populate your world, will have more than they need. They will find other resources other than food, such as ore, or rare and precious metals like gold and silver. (Note, just because gold is the most valuable metal in our world doesn’t mean it has to be in your world.) Also, different settlements will meet up and find resource the other doesn’t have and will want. Trade routes will take place.

This is where another part of the answer comes in. Instead of traveling hundreds of miles to a settlement to settlement, it is easier to meet half way. What happens at these locations, settlements form. Same goes for ports. These areas are where larger settlements will form while smaller villages will form nearby or near farms.

Again, it looks like we have our answer. However, there is one other thing area that needs to be examined. Religious sites. Look at Isreal Judaism or Mecca for Islam. Certain lands, paths, or even regions can be seen as important. This goes back to our religions we craft. In these areas, you can bet all different size settlements will spring up. If we are talking about religion, how about magical lands or sites? If you have Leylines, areas where magic is stronger, I would think people would settle there, especially if you could use magic or learn it.

The closer we get to modern day, we will get settlements that are in remote areas. For these civilizations to form, someone or a group of people had to have reason to settle there. Maybe they wanted to get away from the world. Who knows. However, there is a reason. Depending on how advance your world is or where in history the story falls, you can have random settlements in areas that make no logical sense to settle there. Just be sure you know why the people who founded the town, village, or city.

Before we wrap up today, there is one other thing I want to bring up. While we have a well establish timeline of when civilization started, we are learning that it may not be as clear as we once thought. Areas around the world, we are discovering sites either religious or settlements that predate our earliest known civilizations. This is something you may want to put into your world. If you map out the whole history up to your story, you should know when these areas were settled and by whom. As well, why the abandon them or how they were destroyed.

That’s all for this week. Next week, we will be wrapping up this sub-series with a post on Formation of Settlements. Right now I am looking a what sub-series will be next. I am thinking about Governments, but I feel like I should hold off for a little while. We will see. Check back on Monday for my Weekly Writing Wrap-up. Now on Wednesdays for the month of October only, I will be posting a mini-series on NaNoWriMo Prep. You can find the first in the four post series here.



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