FAQ | World Anvil


Do you have questions? So does the Sphinx! We understand that World Anvil is a new way of doing things, so
if there is anything you need to ask then write to us on Twitter, Facebook or Discord.

What does it mean that my world or articles are Public?

A public world can be accessed by people visiting the website if they find their way to your page. Private worlds, which are available to guild members are worlds that can only be accessed by their owners, their co-authors and their assigned-by-the-owner subscribers.
A public worlds does not mean at any way that it is part of the public domain. Owners/Authors of public or private worlds hold exclusive and non-negotiable copyright of their work unless they state otherwise in their writing in their worlds. World Anvil will do its best to prove the ownership of said worlds if need be and will provide evidence of when any article was created and by which user (username/email). We take privacy and ownership very seriously. We are creators as well and we believe that a creator's work should be protected by any mean possible within the letter of the law. You can read more about this on our ToC and Copyright policy on our footer.

How is World Anvil different from Scrivener?

World Anvil has little resemblance to Scrivener! Scrivener is an amazing tool for authors to write their work and organize it structurally. World Anvil is a system that allows you to keep information about your world’s content in an abstract and thematically organized way, and to cross-reference content.

Why use World Anvil and not OneNote or Google Docs for my world?

Both World Anvil and online editors provide a cloud-based accessible-from-everywhere service, but that’s where the similarity ends. World Anvil provides the creator with a structured, easy-to-link, and easy-to-search-through platform which guarantees fast and controlled access to their world. It also provides an attractive presentation mode for readers. The templating system is designed to be inspiring and thought-provoking, leading you to create more detailed and more complete worlds. Whereas a simple word processor might give you ‘blank page syndrome’, World Anvil will stimulate your creativity.

What if I want to copy someone else’s work for my world?

World Anvil was designed for writing your own original work. You are also free to use World Anvil to collect, post or edit material which is licensed as Creative Commons (as long as you observe the tenets of the specific license - attribution, remixing, etc.) or is in the Public Domain. This might include material from books which are out of copyright, or Wikipedia articles. It’s a good idea to mention which material is not your own in the Author’s Notes section, so as to avoid any confusion about authorship.

If you put up content which belongs to someone else and is their Intellectual Property - be that images, text or anything else - World Anvil reserves the right to take it down. We feel very strongly about Intellectual Property, and we will observe take down notices from content producers who have their rights infringed upon by our users, as per the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA) and the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO).

Submitting verbatim copying of other people’s texts - regardless of licensing - in a World Anvil competition entry will get you disqualified from that competition.

Can I get a refund for my guild membership?

World Anvil subscriptions are non-refundable.
You can cancel your subscription at any time and your subscription will remain active until the end of its period.

We will issue refunds for all subscriptions according to the Consumer Rights Act 2015 (UK) within the first 14 calendar days of a purchase, minus any incurring transaction and handling fees, ONLY if there is evidence of a transaction made without your approval or our own discretion . No other refunds for digital subscriptions are available.

I have a code for a membership. How do I activate it?

First, make sure you have created a World Anvil account and that you are logged in on your browser. Next, go to: https://www.worldanvil.com/activate and enter the code. It’s that simple!
If you already have a membership, you’ll need to wait for that to expire, or talk to Dimitris to sort that out.

What happens when I upgrade my membership?

All membership upgrades of a different guild rank or duration are prorated. You will only pay for the remaining time and the difference nothing else. The same does not apply on downgrades where the downgrate will only be applied after the end of the term of the current membership. Previously canceled memberships will automatically be uncancelled when you upgrade. As a special note, if you have purchased a membership within the last 5 days and you have used a coupon code for the original purchase, and you wish to upgrade, talk to us before doing so (do not upgrade before you do) so we can apply the code to the upgraded membership - on the house!

How do I cancel my subscription

Cancelling your subscription is easy and you can do it at any time. Go to your Guild Membership (subscription) page on the top right of every page and head to the very bottom.

How do I delete a world

Before you delete your world, click on the lock icon on the bottom left screen and remove all subscribers, subscriber groups and authors assigned to the world. Once you do, head to your world's Configuration page. Use the bottom option is Delete World. Click this, then click the red button that appears!

Which World Anvil Subscription do I need?

That depends on how you want to use it!
Check out this post on how to Use World Anvil for Writers & Authors,
and this post for how DMs and Tabletop RPG creators can use World Anvil.
Both posts detail which memberships you'll need for each use case.

What happens when my Guild membership account expires?

If you let your Guild membership expire your private articles remain as they are, private. You will not be able to edit them unless you make them public or renew your membership. You will still be able to see them.

Do my co-authors need a Guild Membership as well?

No! Only the owner of the world needs to have a guild membership. The only thing a co-author needs is a World Anvil account and the desire to write with you!

How is World Anvil different from Obsidian Portal?

Obsidian portal is geared towards allowing Storytellers and players to track a single RPG campaign. World Anvil is a tool for Storytellers who build their own worlds to present them and organize them the same way that a campaign setting book would. It tracks the overarching history and cosmology of a world in its entirety, rather than the adventures of a single group of characters.

Can I tell you my cool idea for a new feature?

Yes! Of course! We are planning to be completely transparent in regards to the future features and also allow our Guild Members to vote on which they feel would be more useful to them.

Is there a limit on articles, images or anything else?

Free members can have up to 42 articles. You can have as many images as you want up to 100 MB in total.

What is the difference between a follower and a subscriber?

Followers are members of the community that will get updated anytime you post something publicly. Subscribers will be able to view more tailor-made content, you can allow them access to secrets, private content etc. In the future, the plan is that you will be able to ask your subscribers to pay a one-time or monthly fee to have access to your ever-growing world!

Can I export my work?

Yes, you will be able to export everything you wrote. Your work is your work - period. Guild members have access to both article and world export while free membeers can export each of their articles individually.

Why can’t free worlds have access to the privacy feature?

We, the co-founders of World Anvil (that’s Dimitris and Janet) are passionate about worldbuilding and the writing and tabletop RPG communities. We believe that everyone should have access to great worldbuilding tools for free, so you can unleash your creativity!

All those free accounts though, cost us time and money - remember that we pay for hosting in order to store your stuff, help you out with tech support, as well as a hundred things behind the scenes that you guys don’t see. And we’re not some massive corporation - we’re a tiny team and a few cats (who aren’t as helpful as you might think…)!

By building publicly, you are inspiring people and motivating the community with your productivity. You’re giving back to the community. And that’s why, for free accounts your content is public.

If you plan to publish in the future, or monetize your work, you can get a Guild Membership starting at less than 3$ USD a month - that’s about the price of a coffee each month. Keeping your work safe and secure - and all the other perks as well - is surely worth that!

What about copyright?

Once again, your work is your work. We do not and will not in any way claim ownership over it. In fact, we plan and explore ways to make sure you can prove the ownership of your world. We value your intellectual property and we are here to protect it.

Technical Issues

Why did my article not save?

If you got an error while your article was saving it means that for some reason the server was not able to process the content. There are two possibilities this might happen.

a) Your connection is down or the server is down (very rare but it does happen)
b) You have used a special character like an emoji or a character pasted into from Microsoft Word (or similar) that cannot be processed.

On the first case, we suggest you try to safely copy on a text file the content you've written and try saving again.
In case of a special character, go through your text and try to find them. the moment you remove them you will be able to save again as normal.