A few weeks ago, I talked about world building nations. To do that, each nation you create needs a political system. There are several types. The least structured type is anarchy. In this type there are few if any rules and it could be chaotic. Then there is democratic. In such a system, the political entities segregate into two or more political parties. A monarchy is where one or two people rule through birthright. This is different from an autocracy. In that type of system the power rests on a single person who came to power through war or revolution.
You can research other forms of government and choose the one you want. Once you make that decision, you can choose the structure. A monarchy has a king or queen, supported by an aristocracy. How that support manifests, is up to you. Keep technology in mind. Does the ruler have supreme control, or is he or she elected? Is there an aristocracy or are there bureaucrats? What is the legal system in place? The answers to these questions can help you create a believable world for your characters to live in.
Are there elections? It goes without saying that in a monarchy or autocracy, there wouldn’t be, but if there are, who can vote? How do they vote. Again, the level of technology is important to keep in mind. So is the legal system. What offices do elections fill? How much power does each elected person hold? How long is the term? How many political parties are there? What do elections look like? There are a lot of questions to ask but the answers will work for you in the long run. Take your time and choose with care.
We aren’t done with creating our world’s political systems. What are the values associated with your political figures? Do they value power to the people? Do they emphasize law and order? Does the ruler rule with an iron fist, it’s their way or the highway? Do the people prosper under the system? You don’t need to go too much in depth, but a general idea of the political values would be good to have.
How do the different nations relate to each other? That can be important. Are there any important alliances? I’m talking about things like NATO. What about rivalries? Think about the Cold War or space race. Such rivalries can add tension or conflict to your story, should you need it.
Politics is part of world building. You need to know what kind of politics the nations in your world have. It will help to create a good backdrop to the action in your story. It could even play a part in the story if needed. So think about politics when you create your world. Even if it doesn’t play a role in your story, you should know the political scene your characters are living in. As with all world building, you can develop it as much or as little as you like.