Development Diary #1

While I am chipping away at my first Epic Fantasy series, I still have a lot of world building to fill out. One of my favorite settings in this world is a place in the kingdom of Hzorah called the Hzorah Crown. This is the capital city and is where a few of my main characters live (yes, I have A LOT of characters to juggle in this series).

Hzorah Crown

The Crown city is set on a delta. A delta forms where a river flows into a larger body of water. The river sometimes carries large amounts of sedimentary material downstream where it is deposited at the river’s mouth.

Photograph of the Indus River Delta taken by NASA

Photograph of the Indus River Delta taken by NASA

I first got the idea of this city when researching Venice, Italy. I learned that Venice has a unique method of transportation, using system of water highways of sorts. When I started finding images of what this actually looks like, I knew I had work this kind of setting into one of my stories.

Venice (C) Alain Feulvarch

Venice (C) Alain Feulvarch

Venice (C) Abhimanyu Bose

Venice (C) Abhimanyu Bose

Crown Palace Murals

Within the Crown Palace is a mural that's painted on the ceiling of the courtroom. It depicts the story of how Hzorah pushed out the Creed from their land. Here’s an image of what this might look like. The room shape and colors are a bit different, but I’m sure you’ll get the basic idea.

Hall of Mirrors in France (C) Dennis Jarvis

Hall of Mirrors in France (C) Dennis Jarvis

Crown Palace Halls and Staircase

The Crown palace has a system of cardinal direction running halls (north, south, east and west) with halls that cut between them at intervals in order to easily cross from one corner of the palace to the other. The main halls are lined with pillars that function as structural reinforcement, aesthetic appeal and also as a lighting fixture. The columns have panels that slide open and reveal candles that can be lit, providing light during the night and then shut during the day. The architect who came up with this design used it in the Crown's palace first and has since been mimicked throughout Hzorah.

Market Hall in Derby, UK (C) Duncan Harris

Market Hall in Derby, UK (C) Duncan Harris

At the center of it all is a grand staircase that flows upwards in twin double-helix. I thought of this idea far before I found an image of it. It was actually a little difficult to find an example. Even this one isn’t really how I envision it, but it’s close enough.

Double-helix staircase in Umschreibung, Munich, Germany (C) Alfredo Jones

Double-helix staircase in Umschreibung, Munich, Germany (C) Alfredo Jones

 

What About You?

Do you enjoy Epic Fantasy stories in the vein of Robert Jordan, Anne McCaffrey and Brandon Sanderson?

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Have you visited Venice or witnessed any awesome ceiling art?

I’d love to know what you think about the Hzorah Crown city and any experiences you have with similar settings.

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