2023 WorldEmber in wow that's a lot of stars | World Anvil
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2023 WorldEmber

wow that's a lot of stars is a sci-fi setting about adventure, exploration, and discovery. Every person, place, and thing has a story to tell, if you listen closely.   Setting Intro | Visitor's Guide | Author's Intentions
WorldEmber is a month-long community event that takes place every December here on World Anvil. The goal is to write at least 10,000 words in new worldbuilding articles. November's prep is below, and December's articles below that.   Click to skip to the articles

November Preparation

Week 1: Pledge

The city of Galendra lies smoldering in the aftermath of the last year. Gangs maintain a temporary truce, aiding in clearing rubble and rebuilding with supplies are flown in from covert sources. But how did we get here?

Word Count Goal

I've done 50k for NaNoWriMo, and did 26k this Summer Camp, but I don't expect to have the energy for lofty number this December. As such, my starting goal is "just" 10,000 .

Area of Focus

The Gal Pals campaign lasted close to two years, taking place primarily within Nisora's largest city. Much of the world was built - and destroyed - in that time, but I've barely written about any of it. For WorldEmber, I'm writing about a lawless planet, its gangs and their leaders, secrets and political intrigue, and the people willing to risk their lives to preserve their riotous way of life.

Week 2: Organizing


I'd written mini-metas for Nisora and other planets the day before this homework was released. Imagine my surprise to see I'd pre-empted the week's homework. Meta Info Here
Mini-meta goals:
  • Convey the vibe
  • List key themes and goals
  • Hint at potential plot hooks

Category Structure

All planets have the same four sub-categories, but Nisora's focus on factions necessitated additional sub-categories under a couple to limit how many articles they contain.
Category goals:
  • Keep the same 4 base categories
  • Minimize category nesting
  • Have 3-10 articles per category


I often struggle to list sources of inspiration. Innumerable experiences combine to form what I create, and I can't pinpoint exactly what helped me make certain connections. When it comes to writing for World Anvil, I find bits of inspiration everywhere. But there are three worlds in particular that each inspire an aspect of my worldbuilding philosophy:    
A few others I'd like to mention:
  • Shattered by Catoblepon because it's so cool.
  • Dark Lord Seduction Plan by Amélie I. S. Debruyne because it's so fun.
  • Vazdimet by Morgan Biscup because book birthday!!

  • Week 3: Homepage

    Another assignment I've somewhat pre-empted -- as part of my new CSS theme, I reworked some of my homepage. I have it broken into three sections that offer less and less guidance the farther you scroll down the page.


    The top is for new readers who need to know what the world is, how it works, and where to begin. It sets the tone, genre, and introduces the concept of purple = interact.

    Entry Points

    The middle is to continue reading. It has featured and recent articles, links for each planet, and shows how article block badges match the icon of the associated planet.


    The last section is for deeper exploration of the codex, timelines, and event progress. The information here is also accessible through the Site Navigation dropdown.

    Week 4: Writing Plan

    This homework is technically "last-minute prep", but seeing as I already write near-daily... there aren't any preparations I need to make for a month of writing. So I've rebranded it as Writing Plan. Knowing no plan survives contact with the enemy.   I entered all Gal Pals-related articles into kumu.io and created a relationship diagram of key connections, priority, article type, and status. Long-term, I want to turn all pink nodes blue. For December, I'm going to work through the higher-priority articles in story order, starting at the beginning of the campaign and seeing how far I get.

    Word Count Progress

    WorldEmber Progress Bar

    21,048 / 10,000



    Prep Checklist


    Word count goal
    Area of focus
    Category organization
    Inspiration list
    Homepage update
    Define a plan


    Apply new theme
    Update Primers
    Improve Index
    Add progress bar

    Cozy Cottage Enclave

    Worldember 2023 - Cozy Cottage Enclave
    Cozy Cottage Enclave badge by Rin Garnett
    The cozy cottage is a quiet place of respite, where we can listen to the crackling flames while wrapped in a blanket and sipping hot cocoa. To enter, you must take the oath:  
    1. I will stop to stoke the fire when it dwindles.
    2. No matter the task, rest when you are tired and for as long as you need to feel rejuvenated.  
    3. I won't force the fire to fit a different stove.
    4. Your pledge is a goal, not a requirement. Your plans are inspiration, not a map.  
    5. I will follow sparks of joy, not chase dying embers.
    6. Write and read what makes you happy, and don't force yourself forward if you're not having fun.  
    7. My flame is beautiful and undying.
    8. Believe in yourself and your ability to create, including when it's a struggle.  
    9. I will tend to all flames under my care.
    10. Working toward non-Worldember goals does not detract from your success, but adds to it.
      (Cozy Cottage oath is heavily inspired by the Camp Chill guidelines from Annie Stein. Insert this badge into your own pledge with [img:5035416], or include the oath with [imgblock:5035416].)

    Staying Focused

    I use Abbie Emmons' Immersive Writing Sessions and spend each 25-minute sprint on a different phase of article writing. I move on to the next phase even if I'm not done the prior one yet to keep from getting stuck on tricky parts.  
    Sprint 1: Outline
    Define the narrative for the article and list out the key points that support it.
    Sprint 2: Detail
    Group lists under headings and turn them into sentences and paragraphs.
    Sprint 3: Flow
    Edit wording for smoother transitions, clearer sentences, and easier reading.
    Sprint 4: Design
    Use BBCode, CSS, and other formatting tools to make the article look nice.
      Since this takes 2+ hours, I rarely do this more than once in a day. If I can't stay focused for a sprint, I stop and either rest or work on something else as needed.

    December Writing

    The articles I write for WorldEmber will magically appear here as they're published!

    Places & Things

    People & Groups

    Flora & Fauna

    Culture & History

    January Review

    The Vigil

    If you haven't completed my scavenger hunt, this is all you'll see here. Complete the hunt to learn more!  
    WE Superlatives
    Longest Article
    Gamma Radiation
    Shortest Article
    Fan Favorite
    Rin Favorite
    Research Base
    Overall, I had a wonderful WorldEmber. It went slightly different than planned - everything I wrote was relevant to my prep, and all but 3 articles were on my original list, but I didn't go in the order I'd set myself up for. Other articles were more important than Galendra's districts and the Giant Earthworm. But it all needed to get written anyways, so I can't be too upset about the order.   In summary:
    • WorldEmber is very fun 10/10
    • I enjoy writing within a theme and will keep doing that next year
    • Mission plot articles will be a stretch goal after other worldbuilding is complete
    • I could manage 10k words most months, but 20k+ is much more tiring
    • "Offworld" became a more accurate theme song as the month went on
    "For December, I'm going to work through the higher-priority articles in story order, starting at the beginning of the campaign and seeing how far I get."
    — Thing I didn't do

    Articles under 2023 WorldEmber

    Cover image: Banner for WE 2023


    Please Login in order to comment!
    Nov 4, 2023 19:33 by Annie Stein

    Loving the new look! I'm very excited to see what we'll get from (wow)Talos, and to just, you know, continue to dig into a world I really enjoy.   alsooo I hope there's room for one more in the cozy cottage! those are some lovely guidelines <3

    Creator of Solaris -— Come Explore!
    Nov 5, 2023 18:28 by Rin Garnett

    The cozy cottage automatically changes shape to fit all occupants at maximum coziness :D I'm hoping we get official assets soon so I can add them to the badge

    Nov 6, 2023 13:21 by Elspeth

    I love the way you've mapped out your article ideas, that's really cool. Have a great WorldEmber!

    Nov 6, 2023 14:23 by Rin Garnett

    Thank you! I'm hoping I can turn it much more blue/Done next month :) May your embers burn bright!

    Nov 7, 2023 16:02

    This is also going to be again a great article. I'm looking forward how you will rock WE and I really like this cozy badge. I would like to stop by in this Cottage too.

    Stay imaginative and discover Blue´s Worlds, Elaqitan and Naharin.
    Nov 7, 2023 19:29 by Rin Garnett

    Everyone is welcome at the cozy cottage, and we'd be happy to have you here <3 May your embers burn bright!

    Nov 11, 2023 01:09 by Zero Sum Games

    Your page design looks incredibly good! It's super creative and attractive. I will be reading more!

    Nov 11, 2023 14:41 by Rin Garnett
    Nov 15, 2023 15:36 by Nimin N

    Love the updated theme, really great sci-fi feel while being restful on the eyes. :) Hope you have a great time during your first World Ember, and looking forward to see more of Talos! I'll be hanging out at the cozy cottage too, it's such a nice place.

    Nov 15, 2023 22:51 by Rin Garnett

    Thank you! That's high praise coming from the creator of Otherspace :D Happy to have you in the cozy cottage!

    Nov 18, 2023 00:52 by Chaewon Choi

    Hello there, I just wanted to let you know that I have never done a WorldEmber before. Although you probably never meant your article like this... your WorldEmber article has been beneficial for me in figuring out how to format and generically answer questions. I've been really inspired by it and I really enjoy the premise of your world! Thank you, Your friendly Cosmic Traveler.

    Thank You, Choi Chaewon.
    Aonani Expert. Multiverse Walker.  

    I'm a Comment Caroler! Click to learn more

      Currently Researching: Armonía
    Nov 18, 2023 18:43 by Rin Garnett

    Inspiring others to create is among the highest honors I can think of <3 Thank you for stopping by, and for leaving such a lovely comment! I hope you have a great WorldEmber!

    Nov 25, 2023 15:07 by Dr Emily Vair-Turnbull

    Oooo, I love the node diagram. :D Good luck with World Ember, I'm so excited to see what you write! :D <3

    Emy x   Etrea | Vazdimet
    Nov 25, 2023 15:46 by Rin Garnett

    Thank you! I'm excited to see if that diagram is helpful to me or just fun to look at :D