19.09: LIVE Recording - Rituals, Rites, and Traditions

Season 19 | Episode 9
17m | Mar 3, 2024

Hosts Erin and DongWon are joined by Fonda Lee and Mahtab Narsimhan for a special episode about creating traditions in your fictional writing. In this episode, we'll explore some of the following: 

-How do you build traditions and rituals in your fictional world (choosing what becomes a tradition or ritual and what doesn’t)? 

-How can you use rituals or traditions to advance a novel’s plot, give characters more depth, and create conflict? 

-What are the pitfalls to avoid (depiction of closed practices, over-ritualizing common traditions)?


Pick a ritual or tradition that you are very accustomed to and make it the center of a fictional scene. You can change its meaning or impact, but the content of the tradition should stay the same.

Thing of the Week: 

Shanghai Immortal by AY Chao (especially the audiobook version)

Liner Notes: 

This podcast episode idea was inspired by ReaderCon 2023, where Erin Roberts was a panelist.

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Credits: Your hosts for this episode were DongWon Song, Erin Roberts, Fonda Lee and Mahtab Narsimhan. It was produced by Emma Reynolds, recorded by Marshall Carr, Jr., and mastered by Alex Jackson.

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