When it came to the landscape for Kios, for some reason I had pictured it to be a mixture of Scotland, Ireland, and England. I had Pinterest boards started. I’d described it somewhat. I liked the idea. But I’d thought it through only a minuscule amount.
And the more I thought about it, the less I liked it. I heard some other writers/readers bemoan the fact that so many “fantasy” books took place in European settings – primarily the countries I just named. Upon further reflection I realized they were indeed correct, and I wanted something different for Echoes.
Since I’m spending so much time on world building and getting the story “correct” anyway, I decided to go ahead and also change up the setting a little bit. While brainstorming about what countryside to base it off of, I made a mental list of the things I knew I needed to include:
- At least one border is the ocean
- One border is a huge forest that no one in recorded history has ever been all the way through
- Pyria, a land that allows slavery, is another border
- The country’s big industry is fabrics (etc…) and they have tons of sheep
There were a few more a few more things, but I stopped when I came to the sheep part of the equation. I Googled a little bit about where sheep were the most prevalent, but in reality I didn’t need to, I already knew what topography Kios would be based off of: New Zealand.
Do y’all realize that there’s 22 sheep for every person who lives in New Zealand? How much cooler can you get? Obviously everything won’t be the same. For one thing, New Zealand is an island, whereas Kios is simply a country next to the ocean. For another thing, although there are mountains in Kios, there aren’t as many as there seem to be in New Zealand. But! At least I have a basic idea of what to start with and build off of.
The architectural practices in Kios are also different than in New Zealand (which, once again makes sense because Kios isn’t an island), but I’ll wait to blog about those for another day.
Have a delightful weekend, y’all!