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Cultural Anthropology for Writers: A World Builder’s Guide by Laura Milanovich is a handy guide to world building for authors. Included are the tools and techniques to creating believable characters in world construction. Culture sets people apart and thinking in terms of beliefs, social norms, traits of race and religion, attitudes, values, goals and language can help a writer avoid costly mistakes. Milanovich starts with the definition of culture and gives examples of shared and learned characteristic features of people. By studying the practices of organizations, behaviors and customs, an artist can create a world where the world actually becomes a character in the fictional story. This concise guide is a worksheet for defining the details that go into who we are as individuals. The foundations of the world such as land, geography, governmental politics, military, schools, travel logistics, biases and worldviews, technology and the everyday life of the people build solid ground to be woven into the back story. Milanovich explores the 12 signal systems norms and taboos and how they contribute to culture shock.
Information for world building can be found in books as facts spark imagination, but defining all the details is what makes a story come to life. At the heart of all humanity, culture sets us apart and our understanding of others is the basis of our perception of the universe. Laura Milanovich in Cultural Anthropology for Writers: A World Builder’s Guide keeps it brief and to the point in a thought-provoking manual which is a must-have for any fiction author who wants to bring it to the next level with powerful and meaningful details.