Priming Your Readers
A filled Codex is a joy to wade through. To dive into the minutia that is someone elses world. Learning the who, the what, and the where can be intoxicating. But it can also drown a new reader. Avoid losing readers by giving them a Primer to larger concepts!
What is a Primer?A Primer is a larger, broader scope article that lays out general information on a single subject. This works well when dealing with complex ideas that may share similar or even the same name, such as Knight Templar. This single concept could have an Organization, a Title or Rank, a Profession, several Items, and specific Traditions or Rituals as well as Myths or Legends. Instead of your reader needing to read five or more Articles just to get the whole idea, you can instead present them with a Primer to Knight Templar, which would summarize each specific article, as well as provide links for further reading on the subject.
Primers can act as either a One-stop shop for information, or as a diving in point for wider understanding.Primers are more than just vague writings or Articles full of Links. They create an understanding of your World and give a basic knowledge before one graduates to the more nuanced elements of the deeper world, much like one must learn to add and subtract before being able to attempt Calculus.
World Anvil Primer Examples
As a World Intro...
With great CSS Wizardry, the wonderful Dieties Ademal and Barron of Ethnis have created a great example of using their Primer as an Introduction to the whole of their world, as a story setting, as a future RPG System, and as a place to announce current developments in the project. The entire Article is designed to pull your interest somewhere and then encourage you to continue your journey with a single click.
As an Overview of Options...
Here, Titan of World Anvil Christopher Dravus demonstrates using his Primers to highlight the subtle similarities and differences of RPG classes in his world, splitting them first into types, and then sub-groupings. It's a wonderful way to show how a common concept is different in your world!
As a Lead in to Further Reading...
The lovely Grandmaster Atena Luna uses a Species Article effectively as a Primer to her various Vampires of her dark horror World. Lots of links and Article Blocks lead you to check out other aspects of this species, but aren't required to get a good grasp of what she is trying to inform her readers of.