Creating A Map Of Your World: Part 2




I’ve seen a lot of posts about how to make maps of your fantasy worlds.
And I thought I'd share mine with you.

Because this is a long-ish process, I'm breaking it up into four easy to follow parts over the next weeks.

Having a map of your own world can be useful when plotting quests, or just figuring out how things relate to each other spatially.
The maps I've created are almost exclusively for my fantasy worlds (In the Clockwork Fairy Tales as well as unpublished works).

Didn’t see part 1? Check it out here.


Prep your proportions

If your map is crazy big (like mine was) you may need to deal with that. In my case, I took a picture of the whole map and then I popped it on my computer, dropped it into a word document (because I needed to be sure it worked on a 11x17 sheet of paper) added a few minor details, and then printed the thing out on a single sheet!
You may be able to skip this step if your original version fits on a normal sheet of paper.

Break out your black marker

This step is necessary, in my opinion, just for ease of later use.
Grab yourself a sharp black marker and trace out everything from your map that you want to use, coastlines, lakes, possibly rivers. Whatever you want in your end product, you’ll want to put it in here now, so you don’t have to keep flipping back and forth.

Do the Line Work

You can do this on a window if you’ve got a sunny day, but I use my nifty light pad (grab your own here).
Put down your Franken map and line up your clean piece of paper. I generally use a stiffer paper like watercolor or a heavy weight drawing paper. From here, you want to tape them or otherwise secure them together. This will make it so much easier to keep your lines together if you need to turn the map around to get a better position for tracing out your line work.


Always use a pencil for this step. You don’t want to accidentally follow a part of a coastline you meant to ignore and have to start over again (especially if you’re using high quality paper).


I generally put in place names at this point as well as a map mark (name your world!) and an image for a compass… but that’s only if I have all of that figured out already.


At this point, you have a pretty clean-slate version of your world!
Don’t forget to come back for part 3!

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