Submission Date


Document Type

Paper- Restricted to Campus Access



Faculty Mentor

Jon Volkmer


Presented during the 22nd Annual Summer Fellows Symposium, July 24, 2020 at Ursinus College.

The downloadable file contains the text of the four chapter novella.

A related presentation is available here.

Project Description

The Verge of Renaissance is a four-part novella which reimagines the conflict between science and religion in our society as a conflict between science and magic in a fantasy world. It also draws inspiration from the late medieval and renaissance periods in Europe, where science represented a new way of thinking and challenged long-held beliefs. Popular audiences can better understand these complex academic ideas when presented in a “fun” genre like fantasy fiction. Through this project, I hope to increase empathy and understanding by portraying real-world issues through the story’s characters. The Verge of Renaissance uses humor and immersive worldbuilding to depict a world readers will want to be a part of. In depicting a fantasy world with advancing technology, this novella also satirizes the cliché of fantasy stories stuck in the middle ages. To supplement my writing, I read a range of fantasy works, including C.S. Lewis’s allegorical The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe, and Terry Pratchett’s satirical Discworld novel The Truth. Over the course of Summer Fellows, I received feedback on the story and revised it in a workshop setting.


Available to Ursinus community only.