Setting – Where Are We?

Posted on Friday, September 11th, 2009 at 4:52 pm

Without giving your reader a good picture of where your story takes place, it is hard to make your story EXCITING!

But be careful not to slow your story down with tons of information that you don’t need.

Is your place real or from your imagination?  How about a little of both?  It is usually easier to think of a real place, describe it from your memory and then add some different scenery to make your reader want to discover more.

Don’t forget we live in a 3-D world.  When describing your place, what does it smell like? What did supper taste like? What sounds can you hear around you? Is there a radio playing, a CD Player?  What do you see, look in all four directions? What are you feeling as you explore your space?  All of these things can be different depending on what season it is.  To get your reader into the story he wants to feel the heat of summer or hear the howling winter wind.

Charlotte’s Web is one of my favorite stories (the book is much better than the movie!)  Even if you have seen the movie read the book now.  It is filled with wonderful images such as:

When they pulled into the Fair Grounds, they could hear the music and see the Ferris wheel turning in the sky.  They could smell the dust of the racetrack where the sprinkling cart had moistened it; and they could smell hamburgers frying and see balloons aloft.  They could hear sheep blatting in their pens.


What is the weather like?

The next day was rainy and dark.  Rain fell on the roof of the barn and dripped steadily from the eaves.  Rain fell on the barnyard and ran in crooked courses down into the lane where thistles and pigweed grew.  Rain splattered against Mrs. Zuckerman’s kitchen window and came gushing out of the downspout.  Rain fell on the backs of the sheep as they grazed in the meadow. (Charlotte’s Web by E.B. White)

Let us see your story, let us enter into your special place and snoop around with your characters as if we are there!

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