I’ve been doing quite a bit of worldbuilding for my new novel, Sparrow’s Gate. It’s set in a different universe than Terracova: Archon, so I’ve got a lot of assets to develop. I have the plot pretty fleshed out, but have been doing more research than writing over the past month, collecting images and putting together a soundtrack of music scores to help me define the mood and pace, as well as learning about zoonotic diseases (yes, that’s a plot hint :-) ).
Looking back at the images I posted on my Facebook Page in February, I can see how my research and intent influenced my eye. That’s not to say that all of the images I shared last month are representative of the style and feel of the new novel’s storyworld, in fact, that’s far from the case. But the elements—characters, ships, space stations, portals, etc—do have bearing. It’s like when you’re thinking about buying a particular product, like a car or cell phone. As soon as you narrow your choices down to one or two, you suddenly begin to notice more of them in the world. The need to develop similar elements in my new novel was definitely guiding my eye last month. I found and shared a lot of good images, many of which sparked great conversations and brought some new perspectives to a few old sci-fi theories and tropes.
Below are the top five images from February—follower favorites based on likes, comments, and shares.
Andrei Pintea’s Portal was the highest rated image, with 433 likes, comments, and shares. It’s no wonder. Portals go hand in hand with imagination, gateways to far off places. Through them, the future, past, and present have no bearing, and we’re free to imagine whatever we want. Placing it in a beautiful, majestic setting like the one above doesn’t hurt either.
I don’t know what it is about the Sith, but they sure do have a strong presence in artwork. The Jedi may be the heroes of the story, but, to me, the Sith are far more complex and intriguing. They exude emotion and depth and seem to be far better at striking a pose. The Apprentice, by Simon Goinard, received 386 likes, comments, and shares.
John Liberto’s Requiem Approach Vector has a dark, ominous feel to it that just seems ripe for a story. A derelict ship and a giant spherical space station hovering in the void? It’s the perfect backdrop for an epic tale. The image received 383 likes, comments, and shares.
Stephen Zavala’s Diving in the Clouds received 381 likes, comments, and shares. I’ve noticed images like these often do well. I think it’s because seeing a ship rocketing through the clouds, rising higher and higher, taps into our sense of adventure. We’re sci-fi fans. We dream of blasting off to explore the solar system and galaxy beyond. We see images like this and think, “Yes, please!”
Parallel Viking Spacecraft, by Levy Wang came in fifth overall, with 360 likes comments, and shares, but generated more comments than any other image. Most of the comments were related to the blue energy ring around the ship, speculating as to its purpose/function. A lot of good theories were put forth—inertia dampening field, warp field, an orbital stabilizer/anchor, protective shielding, and a few others. My favorite came from Angel Rivera, who speculated it could be a type of ram-scoop, used to collect the exotic particles believed to be caught in the warp field generated by an Alcubierre drive.