Shared Worlds summer sf camp asks writers for their favorite cities

Jeff Vandermeer writes in with more news about Shared Worlds, the summer science fiction and fantasy writing camp for kids:

Shared Worlds asked Elizabeth Hand, Nalo Hopkinson, China Meville, Michael Moorcock and others: "What's your pick for the top real-life fantasy or science fiction city?"

At Shared Worlds our students create fantasy and science fiction worlds to fuel their art and writing projects. But even the strangest made-up place can have some real-world spark, and some of the real world's cities can be stranger than anything found in fantasy and science fiction.

With this in mind, we asked some of speculative fiction's brightest minds to tell us their own picks for real-life fantastic cities, and you can read their answers here.

Now in its second year, Shared Worlds is a two-week unique summer camp for teens ages 13 to 18, held at Wofford College in Spartanburg, South Carolina. This year the camp runs from July 19 to August 2, with registration still open to the end of June. Creative and fun, Shared Worlds emphasizes writing fiction, game development, and creating art--all in a safe and structured environment with award-winning faculty. Participants in this "teen think tank" meet like-minded students and learn how to work together and be proactive on their own. The first week, the students form teams and create their own worlds; the second week, they create in them. Faculty for 2009 will include Holly Black, co-creator of the Spiderwick Chronicles, Hugo Nominee Tobias Buckell, White Wolf game developer Will Hindmarch, World Fantasy Award winner Jeff VanderMeer, Weird Tales fiction editor Ann VanderMeer, and more.

Shared World's Top Five Real Fantasy/SF Cities (Thanks, Jeff!)


  1. I’ve been the same 5’10” since 4th grade. Do you have to show ID to get into this workshop? And if not, what form is payment expected in? My father can write a personal check for me if needed. What are the requirements? hOW DO i GET IN? iS there a section that teaches how to write sci-fi/fantasy for Big Adults? what’s the website?> how do I get in?

  2. Author’s name in the first sentence should be written “China Mieville” with an “i”.

    And sounds like an awesome experience. I wish i was 18…

  3. some of the real world’s cities can be stranger than anything found in fantasy and science fiction

    san francisco still gets my vote for most surreal

    i grew up a stone’s throw from “the City” and the longer i’m away the more i feel like i’ve been exiled to Planet of the Muggles

  4. I love the things that are available for kids these days… I wish I was 7 again! I really like the ‘deep process’ that these and other camps are making available for kids to explore into their creative imagination. We are sending our daughter to the calshakes drama camp this year and I hope these creative niche camps keep spring up because there are a lot more things she’s interested in, not the least of which is fiction writing and elaborate environment creation (I think that’s an accurate way to describe it!)
    Support Excellent Stuff for Kids, they are going to get bigger.

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