OHIO Southern to host creative fantasy, sci-fi workshops

Published: November 29, 2023 Author: Staff reports

Ohio University Southern in Ironton is gearing up for an hands-on experience for fantasy and sci-fi enthusiasts with two interactive workshops hosted by adjunct faculty professor Eric Brown.

Fantasy Map-Making Workshop on Nov. 30

On Thursday, Nov. 30, from 2 to 3 p.m., the campus library will be the stage for a Fantasy Map-Making Workshop. Brown, himself a fervent fantasy enthusiast, promises an engaging session for participants keen on crafting their own fictional maps.

"This is a workshop, very literally, on how to make a fantasy or sci-fi map," said Brown. "It's sort of relaxing to do it, so it can help you if you have a lot of anxiety."

Participants can expect an interactive session where they'll learn to design intricate worlds, incorporate storytelling elements and create different terrain features. Using unconventional materials like rice and cold coffee, attendees will simulate ancient maps, lending an authentic feel to their creations.

"It's not just drawing, we're going to make the paper look like it's an old map, like from a treasure hunt," said Brown. "That can also help with anxiety, if you do multiple things instead of just one task."

For those diving into Dungeons and Dragons campaigns or embarking on writing adventures, Brown said that this workshop will serve as a valuable resource.

"If you're starting an original D&D campaign, this is really helpful," he said. "You can map out where dungeons are, treasure hordes, towns, villages—all as a resource to flesh out your world."

For additional information on this workshop, please see this webpage.

Adjunct Faculty Professor Eric Brown speaks to crowd using hand motions
Adjunct Faculty Professor Eric Brown

Sci-Fi Writing Workshop via Zoom on Dec. 8

Transitioning to the world of sci-fi, the campus will host a Sci-Fi Writing Workshop via Zoom on Dec. 8, from 6 to 7 p.m. This workshop is tailored for aspiring sci-fi writers seeking guidance on crafting compelling narratives.

"In the Sci-Fi Writing Workshop, we're just learning the very basics on how to start writing sci-fi," said Brown. "We’re going to cover character world building, interesting conflicts and how you can use real-world examples."

Drawing inspiration from everyday occurrences, Brown explained a portion of the creative process that will be further detailed in the workshop.

"You could use something from a newspaper that actually happened," he said. "Once in a newspaper a couple of years ago in Athens, we looked at a report of a llama escaping... So in the project we did, we switched it around into more of a space creature that was hopping from ship to ship instead of a llama."

Both workshops promise an inclusive and hands-on experience, with all necessary supplies provided at no charge. Whether crafting fantasy realms or envisioning futuristic worlds, these sessions aim to ignite creativity and offer practical guidance for enthusiasts exploring the realms of fantasy and science fiction.

To register for the workshop on Zoom, please see this registration page. For additional information, please see this webpage.