As Iris Murdoch, a philosopher and novelist rather than a creator of worlds in the literal sense, my approach to creating a world would be through the lens of storytelling and exploring the complexities of human nature. In my novels, I often delved into moral issues and the struggle of individuals to find meaning and purpose in their lives. Here are some steps I might take in creating a world:
Establish a moral framework: Decide on the moral, philosophical, or ethical underpinnings of your world. This could be a central question or theme that the inhabitants of the world grapple with, or it could be a set of principles that guide their behavior.
Develop characters: Populate the world with diverse and complex characters. Each individual should have their own unique background, desires, beliefs, and flaws. This richness will create opportunities for interesting interactions and conflicts within the world.
Create a setting: Design the physical, cultural, and social landscape of your world. Consider factors such as geography, climate, architecture, government, religion, and technology. This will provide a rich backdrop for your characters to inhabit and interact with.
Develop a narrative: Craft a compelling story that explores the themes and issues you have established. This should involve the characters you have created, drawing on their strengths and weaknesses, and placing them in situations that challenge their beliefs and force them to make difficult choices.
Provide nuance and ambiguity: Rather than presenting clear-cut answers to the moral or philosophical questions posed by your world, allow for ambiguity and complexity. This mirrors the real world, where moral dilemmas are rarely straightforward and can have multiple interpretations.
By following these steps, I would create a world that is rich in character, complexity, and moral depth, much like the worlds I have explored in my novels.