Ideas For World Building

Whilst I love everything that Papyrus Author has to offer, I would really enjoy seeing something that enables users to create their worlds with a little more ease.

If you see below, I’ve attached an image from my current WIP.

The only workaround I’ve been able to do, is create new documents within Papyrus, and save them to a set folder in the C Drive. I then paste the location of these into the ‘My Research’ area for each entry, so I can quickly access the document. I can attach an image as well, such as a map, which when double clicked on opens up full screen.

The character sheets are a godsend, and work really well, especially when you have tens or hundreds of different characters.

The only thing that is missing, is the ability to build the world itself. Things such as islands, locations, flora and fauna, magic systems, banking systems, a language system even… While I wouldn’t expect all of these things to be incorporated, a dedicated World Building section with different content to edit or add would work great for those of us who are making fantasy worlds from scratch.

I think it would work for all types of authors, not just fantasy creators.

The ability to flick between different resources whilst working all within the program would make the process easier, and more streamlined, so we can focus on the writing, instead of creating blog posts as a procrastination method…

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Oh wow, that’s a cool way of using the Research Database! :open_mouth:

Do you use a blank page when creating a new entry, or have you created a page template for these research entries?

You can also connect text inside your book to these external .pap pages by right-clicking on words, and selecting ‘Insert’ → ‘Link’, if you want to create a quick reference in your Pinboard, for example.

Creating Links

quick reference

I love seeing the different ways writers use Papyrus Author’s features, and this is definitely the first time I’ve seen the Research Database used in this way–it’s super interesting!

I’d like to hear more ideas on how you’d see the information could be interconnected - what would this worldbuilding section of Papyrus Author look like? :earth_americas:

At the moment, we have the Character Sheets, Location Sheets and Things Sheets, that create their own Database each - have you tried the location and item sheets for this purpose?



I agree!

I didn’t realise these were a thing! They’re quite hidden away without searching them out. The Database for Research and Characters is pretty easy, but finding these under the ‘Table’ section seemed kind of odd? A personal preference would be for these to be under the same area when clicking on ‘Author’ next to the research and character options.

The location parts would work perfectly for my project as I wouldn’t need separate documents or files, and the items are useful too! Especially for a fantasy world with lots of unique trinkets and stuff.

Here is what my current set up consists of:

I copy the link in the source box, and paste it into the search bar on my folders, or through quick search which can all be done in the space of a few keyboard shortcuts and not involve touching the mouse at all, so pretty streamlined. This then opens the document below:

This document was a simple new document, which was then saved into the desired location on my computer, as you can see below, I have a folder set up for everything to do with this project:

As for further ideas, I think a dedicated area for world building would be something that could really make this program stand out from others that are available.

Within the World Building section, you could have the current features, Characters, Locations, and Items (research should stay separate).

Further sections could be added, such as:

  • Flora, Fauna (or named something else, Nature/Animals for example). This section(s) should be similar to the character sheets, but for animals or plants. Animals can have a species section which could be further broken down into sub species, their habitats, their diet, potentially a food chain option, gestation periods. And for the flora, very similar, such as where they grow, their berries/fruit, are they poisonous, uses for said plants or trees such as potions or remedies, or anything medicinal.

  • Monetary System - which could have subsections within for different denominations and their values, how they look, circulation amounts, minting images (maybe?) and a simple conversion calculator that shows how many of a certain coin/value would make up a larger options (1 Dollar = 4 x quarters - as a basic example)

  • Maps - Somewhere to store images of your world. Not everyone will create maps, but they make the world building aspect a lot easier to manage when you can see the whole thing in front of you. It makes travel times and distances make more sense. Nothing worse than a potential reader getting pulled from the narrative when it only takes a few hours to reach somewhere when its hundreds of miles away and should take far longer. I’m not expecting software to be implemented to create these maps, there are plenty of places to do this online already, but somewhere to store them and access them with ease would be a nice touch.

There are probably far more ideas I could add to this, but I think these are the main things that would be sought after. I decided not to add a language section, as this is far more complicated, and after all, this is a piece of writing software.

All of the above mentioned additions would work really well with the linking option for a quick and easy way to find what you’re looking for as you’re writing.

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Oh no! :face_with_open_eyes_and_hand_over_mouth:

We will definitely improve the visibility, and show more clearly what sort of customization the Sheets and Character database enables in the future! :100:

Your setup is really cool - I like that you’ve been able to manage a way of navigating documents without touching the mouse - it always kind of takes you out of the flow, when you have to leave the document, and navigate in Windows’ file explorer view.

I hope you can maybe do a hybrid approach with your current project with your own Research Database setup, as well as implementing the Sheets, because…

You can create additional sheet categories as well in addition to the standard three, and customize them to fit each category’s needs. For example, the Fauna database would have a field for species distribution, while Flora would need a field for a scientific name.

Here’s how to do it:

  1. Select the word you want to create a new sheet category for - in the video below I’ve used Grouse-stag as an example.
  2. Right click, and go ‘Connect a Sheet’ → ‘Create a new Sheet Category‘, and name the category (eg. ‘Fauna’).
  3. A new, empty Sheet opens–you can now select the template (Character, Location, Thing) from the top-left, and give each field a name.

:bulb: For more info on how to use the Sheets, click the ? button on the top-right of the Sheet.

Here’s a quick video on how it looks to create a new category:


Creating New Tables

And how the sheets look like:


And for further reading, here’s an article on the Sheets: Character Sheets.

At the moment, all the sheets provide the link-to-text feature, where Papyrus Author will connect all the words in the “Names” field of a sheet to the text.

But a sort of search function, or a view of all these items could be really cool… thank you for your ideas! It’s always appreciated. :bulb: :grin:

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Thank you for this reply! Always good to see a company interacting with their users and potentially implementing adjustments and changes they have suggested. Whilst it will make my life easier to use with certain changes to visibility, I feel it will be a welcome change to everyone else as well who wasn’t aware of some of these features.

I will be looking into creating some new sheets for this project!

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