Shine Cycle year-end retrospective

As I mentioned in Saturday’s post, this week we’ll be taking a look back over the past year on this blog. Today is devoted to the Shine Cycle worldbuilding and other background material that appeared on Mondays throughout the year.

About once a month, I tried to give a status update on my writing. But most months I had little progress to report that had not already appeared on the blog in the form of a worldbuilding article or a poem.

The series of précis of each planned book in the series continued throughout the year. The first post in that series after the (liturgical) year began was a précis of The Dragon Returns. That was followed by a digression, to the “Alternate Universes” planned sub-series, but we then returned to the “main line” with Sunshine Civil War and The Imperial War, which ended the first “arc” of the high-level story. We moved into the second arc with a précis of The Barbaric Dragon, followed by one of Space and Time in two parts. Then there was another digression, into the planned “Reignalmia” sub-series. After that was Galaxy and Universe, and then the first two parts (an introduction and plot summary) of The Longest War brought us to the end of the year.

Over the past few years, I’ve written several posts describing places in which various parts of the story may be set. There were only two of those this year, about Avalon, an island in the “Continental River,” and the Princedom of the Two Rivers. I also wrote about lo ergo dy or, a language I’ve partly developed.

Far more frequent this year were descriptions of races of beings that inhabit the world of the Shine Cycle, including a race of four-winged bats called the Sigyni, winged unicorns, and for completeness human beings as well as the elves, werewolves, and centaurs you might expect. The post on centaurs sparked a somewhat lengthy discussion in the comments section.

Most posts dealt with some aspect of the society of the Shine and Wild Empire, with which the story is most concerned. For example, in the area of economics, this year I wrote about corporations and property and inheritance in that society.

A few weeks ago I wrote about three of the fundamentals of the social order, fealty, family, and the Christian faith. Months earlier I wrote about the Imperial Parliament and the form and role of the Church. But I also wrote about less serious topics, like gift-giving, making resolutions, flags and emblems, dancing, and the King’s Birthday holiday. Also worth noting in the latter category is a post about Imperial Robo Cards, a somewhat popular pastime.

On the subject of the political organization of the Shine and Wild Empire, in addition to the post I mentioned about its Parliament, I wrote about “republican government and the franchise” in that society, the three international organizations that are the focus of most international politics, education and the press, and the “justice system”.

Other worldbuilding topics I covered included travel, books and libraries, and computing (“computer science” and technology).

If you missed any of these, or don’t remember them, I encourage you to look back over them—I know quite well that my worldbuilding could use the help!


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