m. c. de marco: To invent new life and new civilizations...


The NaNoWriMo forums have opened, and I posted some questions to myself qua megaworldbuilder. Since the forums are deleted every year, I’ve preserved them for posterity here:

Is the megastructure full of people, only sparsely populated, or entirely empty?

Do my characters know they’re not on a normal planet? Are they natives and/or do the natives know? Are they descended from the builders or are they more recent colonists?

Why was the megastructure built? Is it abandoned like it (typically) looks, or it is a trap of some sort?

How do my characters get around on something so big it would take years to get from point A to point B by any natural means? Is there a high-speed transit system built in? Is the economy (especially food production) fully automated, mechanized like ours, or entirely reliant on manual labor?

Is the structure completely uniform, or is there some interesting spot they’re trying to reach or might end up at accidentally?

Is the environment completely uniform and Earth-like, or are there alien and/or uninhabitable regions? What separates such regions from each other?

Is there an exact copy of Earth or regions of Earth that might fool my characters into thinking they’re there? (The Ringworld had regions that were copies of know worlds like Earth and Mars.)

There’s always the option of just using the megastructure for a setting, where most of these questions wouldn’t matter to my characters.

I’ve already decided to use my favorite BDO, but if I hadn’t I’d also be asking whether my megastructure was solid or hollow, whether it spun for gravity, was big enough to have gravity, or had none, and whether it was spherical, cylindrical, toroidal, ring-shaped, flat, or something stranger.