Why the ‘Where’ Matters

This entry is part 4 of 6 in the series Exploring the Sea

How important is the setting to a story?

For instance, if you wrote a tale about two characters solving a crime, but you left out every detail about the setting. How long do you think it would take you to figure out that the story takes place in Nowhere Land?

Well, it would probably depend on the story. Perhaps in the supposed mystery above, the book opens with a scene of two people discussing the consequences of this murderer escaping. Sure, you’d wonder where the two were talking, but maybe you wouldn’t immediately notice the setting is completely missing.

BUT then what if you try to say that the characters left the building and climbed into his or her car? Driving down the road in a busy city IS a setting, so it would be impossible to explain that without describing the car and the buildings nearby.


No big problem, right?

Sure, it’s not a problem, UNLESS you want to add some action. For instance, perhaps the murderer is after them as well, and in the middle of them driving down the highway, the two suddenly notice someone is speeding up behind them.

That’s when the lack of a setting is going to make things very confusing.

That said, depending on the first scene of the book and your characters, the setting might be less or more important.

What doesn’t vary though is the fact that you do need a setting, whether or not it plays an important role in the story or not.

Where does your story take place?

It doesn’t have to be something extraordinary like a fantasy world or even the arctic tundra. Maybe your setting is simply a calm neighborhood or a bustling city. On the other hand, you might decide adding a more interesting setting could add to your story.

Whatever you choose, make sure you do include at least a bit of setting, both to get you into the flow of your story and to draw your characters in as well.


Series Navigation<< Writing on the WavesMemorized by the Majesty >>





One response to “Why the ‘Where’ Matters”

  1. Adalia Westermann Avatar
    Adalia Westermann

    Great so far D.P.!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *