Creating something from absolute zero is a) too friggin’ hard and b) a sign of divine powers. Since none of us is an omnipotent deity (and if any of you is, let us know, so that we can build you a shrine), we are going for option ‘a’. What does it take to create a new world? What are we, the humble (haha!) writers, supposed to do, in order to breathe life to our thoughts?
One of the first things to consider is the fact that, these worlds we have in our heads, are indeed real. Think what Dumbledore said in ‘The Deathly Hallows’:
“Of course it is happening inside your head, Harry, but why on earth should that mean that it is not real?”
This is, I believe, something every writer should hold on to. If we treat our imagination as a reality, we can shape it in a way that is, to us, satisfying. You might say that the important thing is that others should find it interesting too. You are partially right. I ask you this: would you publish something that doesn’t sit well with you? Didn’t think so.
Another thing to have in mind is that, in order to shape a story, one must try and wring out the unnecessary things. You do not have to put a sex scene, blood and gore are not always that important etc. Of course you can use these tropes, and others, but try not to do so with the ‘sex sells’ mindset. Stick to what makes your story progress, and use any plot device if it is important, not popular.
Finally, the most ambiguous one: Cheat, if you must. What I mean by that is that, using something else as a foundation is not wrong. How many works do you know that have been inspired by Tolkien? Existing material is a useful source for you. You must remember though: inspiration is one thing, outright copying is another. Don’t mix up the two. People are not stupid, and in the end, do you want to be remembered as a thief?
I am not really the person to tell you what to do. I still struggle with these, and many more things. Those are but mere thoughts that just came to my head. Why not share? Remember, sharing is caring and stuff. Till next time!