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如何创造一个幻想世界 – 译学馆
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如何创造一个幻想世界

How to build a fictional world - Kate Messner

在J·R·R的世界
In J.R.R.’s world,
甘道夫是被巴拉尔派到中土世界
Gandalf is one of five wizards sent by the Valar
领导人们与索伦的黑暗势力进行斗争的
to guide the inhabitants of Middle Earth
五名巫师中的一个
in their strugglesagainst the dark force of Sauron.
甘道夫的身体是会消逝的
Gandalf’s body was mortal,
遵从于中土世界的自然法则
subject to the physical rules of Middle Earth,
但其灵魂是不朽的
but his spirit was immortal,
这点由他作为灰袍甘道夫死去
as seen when he died as Gandalf the Grey
又以白袍甘道夫的形象复活可以看出
and resurrected as Gandalf the White.
根据沃卓斯基的剧本
According to the Wachowski’s script,
一个清醒的人 只需连接
an awakened human only has to link up
并破解矩阵的二进制码
and hack the neon binarycode of the Matrix
就能在几秒内学会操纵直升飞机
to learn how to fly a helicopter in a matter of seconds.
如果你是这种人 或是这些人中的一个
Or if you are the One, or one of the Ones,
你甚至都不需要直升飞机
you don’t even need a helicopter,
你只需要一副很酷的墨镜就行
you just need a cool pair of shades.
柴郡猫能拿自己的脑袋玩耍
Cheshire cats can juggle their own heads.
iPads都属于低层次的
iPads are rudimentary.
只有抓到金色飞贼 魁地奇比赛才算结束
No Quidditch match endsuntil the Golden Snitch is caught.
对于生命 宇宙 所有事情等终极问题
And the answer to the ultimatequestion of life, the universe,
答案最可能是42
and everything is most certainly 42.
如同现实生活 虚构的世界
Just like real life,fictional worlds operate consistently
也应该遵循物理和社会规律
within a spectrum of physicaland societal rules.
这会让这些复杂的世界变得可信 易懂 以及值得探索
That’s what makes these intricate worlds believable, comprehensible,and worth exploring.
在现实生活中 万有引力使七套装的《哈利•波特》
In real life, the Law of Gravityholds seven book sets of”Harry Potter”
能稳稳地摆在世界各地数以百万的书架上
to millions of bookshelvesaround the world.
我们知道这是真的 但也能明白
We know this to be true, but we also know
在J·K·罗琳敲下“巫师”
that ever since J.K. typed the words wizard,
“魔杖” 和“羽加迪姆 勒维奥萨”的一瞬间
wand, and”Wingardium Leviosa,”
万有引力定律就消失在
that Law of Gravity has ceased to exist
这无数书架上的亿万张书页之间了
on the trillions of pagesresting between those bookends.
科幻和魔幻文学的作者创建出各种世界
Authors of science fiction and fantasyliterally build worlds.
他们制定规则 (绘出)地图 (创造)血统
They make rules, maps, lineages, languages,
语言 文化 宇宙
cultures, universes,
让宇宙中嵌套宇宙
alternate universes within universes,
从这些世界萌生出一个接一个的故事
and from those worlds sproutstory, after story, after story.
如果写得好
When it’s done well,
读者能够完全理解这些虚构的世界和它们的规则
readers can understand fictional worlds and their rules
就像生活在其中的角色所做的那样
just as well as the charactersthat live in them do
有时 读者对书中世界的认知
and sometimes, just as well or even better
和对书本外的世界的理解一样好 甚至更好
than the reader understandsthe world outside of the book.
但这是怎样做到的呢?
But how?
人类在纸上写下的潦草文字是怎么
How can human-made squiggles on a page
将光线反射进眼睛 进而向大脑发送信号
reflect lights into our eyesthat send signals to our brains
使其被逻辑化和情绪化地翻译成复杂的故事
that we logically and emotionally decodeas complex narratives
驱使我们奋斗 哭泣 歌唱以及思考
that move us to fight, cry, sing, and think,
足够强大到不仅可以支撑
that are strong enough not only to hold
作者虚构的整个复杂的世界
up a world that is completely invented by the author,
还在读者读完最后一个字
but also to changethe reader’s perspective
回到现实生活之后
on the real world that resumes
仍然影响着他们的思想?
only when the final squiggle is reached?
我不确定是否有人知道这个问题的答案
I’m not sure anyone knowsthe answer to that question,
但幻想 虚构的世界每天都在我们的大脑中
yet fantastical, fictional worldsare created everyday
在我们的电脑上
in our minds, on computers,
甚至在街头餐馆的餐巾纸上被创造着
even on napkins at the restaurant down the street.
事实上 你的想象力以及甘愿
The truth is your imaginationand a willingness to, figuratively,
活在自己世界的意愿都是
live in your own world are all you
动笔写一部小说所必需的
need to get started writing a novel.
我不曾创造出霍格沃茨或星球大战的酒馆
I didn’t dream up Hogwartsor the Star Wars’ Cantina,
但我也为孩子们和年轻人写过一些科幻惊险小说
but I have written some science thrillers for kids and young adults.
这儿有些我遇到过的问题和解决办法
Here are some questionsand methods I’ve used
可以帮助你构建故事发生的世界
to help build the worldsin which those books take place.
我从基础的地方和时间开始
I start with a basic place and time.
无论是幻想的世界
Whether that’s a fantasy world
还是现实世界中未来主义的设定
or a futuristic setting in the real world,
都有必要知道你在哪儿
it’s important to know where you are and
你是在过去 现在 还是未来
whether you’re working in the past, present, or future.
我喜欢画一个时间轴来展示世界的发展方式
I like to create a timeline showing how the world came to be.
什么样的历史事件促成了这种结果?
What past events have shapedthe way it is now?
我通过思索这些问题的答案
Then I brainstorm answers to questions
来引出虚构世界的细节
that draw out the detailsof my fictional world.
有什么样的规则呢?
What rules are in place here?
这涵盖了方方面面 从万有引力
This covers everythingfrom laws of gravity,
也许不包括吧 到社会规则以及
or not, to the rules of society and the punishments
个体打破规则应承担(责任)的惩罚机制
for individuals who break them.
这个世界有着什么样的政府?
What kind of governmentdoes this world have?
谁大权在握 谁受制于人?
Who has power, and who doesn’t?
这儿的人信仰什么?
What do people believe in here?
这个社会最看重什么?
And what does this society value most?
该想想日常生活了
Then it’s time to thinkabout day-to-day life.
这个世界的气候怎样?
What’s the weather like in this world?
居民住在哪里 在哪儿工作 去哪儿上学?
Where do the inhabitants liveand work and go to school?
他们吃什么 玩什么?
What do they eat and how do they play?
他们怎样对待孩子和老人?
How do they treat their youngand their old?
他们与动物和植物有着什么样的关系?
What relationships do they have with the animals and plants of the world?
那些动物和植物看起来是什么样子的?
And what do those animalsand plants look like?
这里有着什么样的科技?
What kind of technology exists?
运输?
Transportation?
通讯?
Communication?
获取信息的途径?
Access to information?
有太多需要好好想一想的了!
There’s so much to think about! So,
所以 花点儿时间
spend some time living
搞定这些任务 找到问题的答案
in those tasks and the answers to those questions,
对于构建自己的虚拟世界 你就成功了一半
and you’re well on your way to building your own fictional world.
如果你希望你的读者
Once you know your world as well
能像你一样了解自己的世界
as you hope your reader will,
让你的角色们自由地生活其中 看看会发生什么
set your characters free in itand see what happens.
问问你自己
And ask yourself,
“你创造的世界如何塑造生活在其中的个体?
“ How does this world you created shape the individuals who live in it?
有可能出现什么样的冲突?”
And what kind of conflictis likely to emerge?”
回答出这些问题 你就有了自己的故事
Answer those questions,and you have your story.
祝你好运 未来的造世主!
Good luck, future world-builder!

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