Between the chaos of my daily life, I've been working on the worldbuilding for my next novel project. It's coming together somewhat differently from my usual process, and I hope the changes will pay off.
I typically do a few short sections on global elements - cosmology, world history, magic system, general geography - and then focus on the specific individual countries about which I'm writing. Elements may bleed over from country to country, or I may deliberately set up contrast between them.
With this project, I'm spending a lot more time on the global ... but rather than precise definitions, I've included scope, variance, and tendencies - a broader approach that gives me a framework upon which to hang individual regions (and individuals). My hope is that the end result will be more granular, less neatly defined, and that when I get down to specific countries and cities, I'll have a clearer sense of how they fit into the world as a whole.
In particular, rather than simply saying "this is what religious people believe," (as if one global religion is realistic!) I've created a quartet of deities who manifest in different ways. Some denominations may revere all four; others may believe in the existence of only a single deity; still others might believe in two, but consider them "good" and "evil."
It's a lot more work, but a) I think it will go quicker when I get down to the specifics, since I won't be creating so much wholecloth; and b) ... let's face it, I'm obsessed with worldbuilding and I would cheerfully spend all my time doing it anyway.
Another change to the way I usually do things is I don't have a mental outline for what sections I need. I'm writing sections as they occur to me. For instance, I just realized that I wanted to go back and talk about holidays. Now, this is a general / global discussion; individual countries might have their own days of celebration ...
I'm also running into the weird issue that the word "chimpanzee" feels irredeemably modern and I'm not sure how to handle referencing such a creature, but that's another story.