Virtual Worlds

Welcome To My Worlds

As promised in my recent piece, Revirtualizing, here’s a summary of my current virtual world places and writing projects.


This is my main inworld project and currently my main source of story material. It’s a 768 varregion, the size of nine standard regions in a 3×3 square. The location is “somewhere in the Corn Belt of the U.S.” The sim consists of the small town of Dankoville, several farming communities and two small cities. In story, this sim constitutes most of Strange County. You can visit Dankoville on Naras Nook grid. Here’s the Hypergrid address:


Danko has lived on the Winterfell estate in Second Life for the past five years. It has been his home base from which to travel the Metaverse and the Chronoverse. Danko has at various times owned one or more of the following here: a townhouse, a cabin in the woods, an office, a pub, his own region with a castle. Currently he has one small parcel in the Winterfell Laudanum region for the Storytellers Pub. He has a private office and sitting room in the sky above the pub. You can visit Winterfell in Second Life. Here’s the SLURL address for my pub:

These next three sims are all currently located offline in Sim-on-a-Stick (SoaS).

Medieval Project

This will be a “forever project.” It will never be finished and it will never go online. It’s simply too big for that. However, parts of it may very well go online someday.

In January 2014, I started making a four-region Medieval sim on Kitely. The buildings were those I bought or freebies I’d collected as well as some mods I’d done. Early on in the process, I got a story idea and eventually wrote a 9200 word story that took place in this location. That was much too long for my story blog.

Soon after starting the first Medieval sim, I decided to build another one at the same time, an unrelated place. The big difference being that in this sim, it would always be winter. It was also a four-region world on Kitely. I made the southern half of one region lower than the rest of the sim so it could have farmland and a growing season to sustain the frozen northern area. I started getting an image of the ruler of this land.

Both of these projects sat on the shelf on Kitely for months, never open to the public. I’d visit them once in awhile. Last December, I was fooling around in SoaS with varregions. I wanted to investigate multiple varregions sharing borders – which there had been trouble reports about; I wanted to have a grid with only varregions and no standard regions – because there was a lot of talk about how mixing the two caused trouble; I wanted to use only 512×512 varregions – because some said larger ones caused trouble and others said mixing the sizes of vars wasn’t good.

If you’re not familiar with varregions, a 512 var is the equivalent of four standard regions in a square, a 2×2 layout.

I placed three of these end to end from north to south on my grid. To the east of that, I placed two vars end to end, north to south, lined up so they were centered next to the row of three. Then to the east of those two, I added another row of three, then a row of two, and one last row of three vars.

I now had a grid with 13 varregions – equivalent to 52 standard regions – laid out in a way that on the World Map…sort of looked like a castle. Which got me thinking…

That’s when the Medieval Project started taking shape. I moved the two medieval sims from Kitely to this new world in SoaS. I then began thinking about which vars to leave as open bodies of water and I began investigating names of little kingdoms and started thinking about the story possibilities. I uploaded some free OARs which feature castles including four by Giacomo Rexen of Craft World grid. And I’ve done a lot of terrain work. I’ve written one major scene for this world, involving a meeting of the ruling council. Danko is in that story but the names of all the other characters were left blank.

So, as you can see, a start has been made on several fronts but only a start.

Victorian Steampunk Project

This is a long-term project in SoaS. I’d like to make a Victorian Steampunk location setting for Danko’s travels in the 1870s. He keeps an office in this time. Over the past five years in his story blog, he has written about his travels in Winterfell and Caledon as well as (Second Life) Steamland nations, past and present, and allied nations. But much of the current writing I’m doing requires that I create the place and place names and the people, of course. Although I gave initial thought and a small amount of inworld layout work to this project over a year ago, it’s been sitting on the shelf since. I don’t expect to have serious time to devote to it any time soon but I have already written one story that takes place in this location, so I would like to make some progress on the build. I have put out the word that I am looking for Victorian-era buildings and clothing and I will be shopping for those items in my travels.

New England Island Project

This is the project most likely to get finished.

In early 2014, I created a one-region world on Kitely depicting an island town somewhere off the coast of New England. This region was about 90-percent done but it sat there for months, closed to the public, as I was busy with other things. When I downgraded my Kitely account the other day, I moved my unfinished regions there into SoaS to have them available offline. Because this Island build is so close to being finished, I’ve decided to take a serious look at its story possibilities. I think this may become my secondary project after Dankoville. I’ll tell you more about this project soon.




Man, I don’t even know where to begin.

Dankoville went online in September of 2013. It was a complete surprise to me that I could run my own virtual world on my PC. It was great, I was having a ball.

In October, the PC broke. It was in the middle of some very busy and difficult RL times. The laptop, a Mac, was pressed into service. But I couldn’t run Dankoville on it. Or Sim-on-a-Stick. Everything was put on hold. Getting the PC sorted was one of those, “after the holidays” things.

In late January, the new PC arrived. Dankoville was back and virtual life was good.

By April, I realized that I was going to have to figure out some other way to upgrade to OpenSim 0.8 because the system I was using to run 0.7.5, New World Studio, was apparently never going to be updated again.

In May 2014, I began jumping through various hoops to try to get OpenSim 0.8 running on my PC. But I’m not tech savvy. And when things don’t go the way the walkthrough says they’re supposed to, I’m dead.

Dankoville had started out as a very small project. One region. Then four. But I added more because I could. And now it was big enough that not running it myself was out of the question. It would be too expensive to run 12 to 14 regions with a hosting company or renting directly from the grid.

I looked at connecting Dankoville to a grid and just running the regions myself but it was bigger than what most grids allowed. In the fall, a couple new grids came along that didn’t have such restrictions. I tried Tangle OS, Atek and WestWorld. None of that worked out. In late-February 2015, I put out the word I was looking for a new home for Dankoville.

A few days later, we reopened, connected to Naras Nook. We’re almost two months in and things have worked out well. It’s been a lot of work to get moved and resettled. I also downsized the sim from the 1024 varregion it had become (the size of a standard 4×4 or 16 regions) to a 768 var (3×3, 9) and that took a lot of work. And then we had a big story project right off, that kept me busy.

So now, here I am. I have finally arrived at that, “Now, where was I?” moment. It’s the first time in almost a year I can say, “Okay, now what would I like to do next?”

During that year, some things got done, others were neglected. New ideas came along and the magic of others faded. But there are many projects in front of me, more than enough to choose from. This week, with the dust of the past year settled, I could finally see clear to make those choices.

I have several on-going writing projects related to virtual worlds and two others waiting in the wings, impatiently. And I’m about to enter the world of self-publishing ebooks. Reorganizing my blogs and websites to fit my current needs is also in order and I’ve been working on that these past few days.

The biggest change I’m making is restructuring my land holdings. Dankoville is my main inworld focus these days as well as a prime source of story material. It is my base in OpenSim and I don’t really need any other. So I have closed my worlds on Kitely and moved to a basic account. My Second Life base remains my pub in Winterfell. I have a little office and sitting room in the sky above it. And I recently acquired a little piece of Mainland for my story characters to have a place to Set Home.

One place I had on Kitely but never opened to the public, that I see as a future story setting, will be moved to Sim-on-a-Stick. I have already created two other worlds in SoaS that I have been writing about. One of them is 52 regions big (thirteen 512 varregions), too big to ever come online. But it doesn’t matter. I can go there whenever I want and I can use it for story settings.

I’m planning to use this blog to write about these projects as I go. In my next installment, I’ll give you a description of the projects I referred to here and tell you more about how I use them in my writing.