Maps & Cartography

by Allison on October 24, 2011

in For the Love of Books

I love maps.  The beautiful map below by Ellisa Mitchell of the Wheel of Time series by Robert Jordan (a series I have been reading since I was a teenager & also one I am determined to finish).  But map making isn’t just for science fiction/fantasy novels.  As this post by Austin Kleon points out, “every tale creates a world in the reader’s mind—and it explored ways that drawing that world can lead to better fiction.”

A lot of my favorite books from childhood include a map.  In fact, a lot of my favorite books in general involve some sort of map (as my Pinterest account demonstrates).  & then there is mind mapping – a type of visual organization of concepts & ideas.

Wheel of Time Map


We create little sketches of side streets so we can remind ourselves how to get to our friend’s new apartment.  Sometimes on paper, sometimes on the back of our hand.  My dad once drew a map on a paper napkin to assist my mom in the making of a perfect hamburger.  (note: my mom wasn’t impressed)

It is these maps & diagrams that endear us to others, I think.  We learn how to navigate through our own barriers & how others navigate over their own stumbling blocks.


Links of Note:

Amanda Farquharson’s “Mind Maps to End All Mind Maps”

F*ck Yeah, Fictional Maps

This is the Hand Drawn Map Association

Recommended Reading:

Maps of the Imagination: The Writer as Cartographer by Peter Turchi

You Are Here: Personal Geographies & Other Maps of the Imagination by Katharine Harmon

The Dictionary of Imaginary Places by Alberto Manguel & Gianni Guadalupi

The Ultimate Book of Mind Maps by Tony Buzan

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