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11

Sometimes for me, when growing the setting first, I find it generates new characters, details and interactions that lead to a story organically growing out of the exercise. There are many ways to start putting a story together and very few are right or wrong. Still… Pros A cure for writer’s block; if you want to write but don’t know where to begin, ...


9

Either don't mention it at all or mention it fairly early. The reader is capable of building a decent image of the location in their mind and it's fine both for real locations and (even easier) for imaginary/undefined ones. That doesn't really matter. What matters is not to force them to break it down. It's extremely frustrating for a reader to build an ...


5

I think it's important to figure out why you were bored by the mining community setting. Is it because the character made too much of the details without giving the reader a sense of why they were important? For example, if the reader is following the character through a day in the mines, are the details important because we don't know if at any moment the ...


5

If the location isn't relevant to the story then there's no need to mention it. In a fantasy, mentioning the location may help add to the colour and depth of the world, but it's still not vital. I very rarely state where a story is set. In a short story you want to keep the reader's focus on the story, and if the location adds nothing then it will only get ...


4

Make the atmosphere and the perspective serve the story, not vice versa. It's a different story if your own home - the place you know in and out - transforms into a battle arena and either serves as your weapon, its nooks and crannies providing an advantage over the oppressor, or a traitor - a years-old companion turning on you and places you knew to be ...


3

I think you can have both in the story. I think the reader won't feel cheated as long as you don't make a big geographical mistake. What you can do is to add little details to add some familiarity, and use the rest to produce something fresh (the unique way in which the character sees the world). For instance, in the novels I read, authors describe the ...


1

If you're going to set something in a familiar city, I want all the details to prove you know it. I want it to be like when we watch Elementary or Person of Interest and we're constantly pausing to see what street the show was filmed on because we recognize the bodega on the corner. If you're just setting the book in A Major City, and the character and ...


1

In science fiction, setting typically is more vital to the story than in other genres. By definition, the location in a science fiction story must be a place in which some scientific discovery or concept alters the world so that it looks different than the one in which we live. Because of this, many science fiction authors start writing their stories by ...


1

Damon Knight once said that when he has an idea for some science-fictional McGuffin but doesn’t know how to incorporate it into an actual story, he asks himself, “Who would this hurt?” So if you know enough about your setting to be able to identify a character with a problem peculiar to that setting, then you’re ready to write a story in that setting. ...


1

This isn't the pros and cons as such, but here's my approach that should help influence your decision. I always introduce elements of the setting via the actions of my character. You should never stop the story progressing, even to describe. See this example (excuse the arbitrary nature of it): The hallways were made from a unique metal alloy only ...


1

A dramatist once told me that he always imagines the setting first, including rooms and entries and exits. Creating a stage is like a frame of a painting, allowing the writer to be like an artist placing the rest of the characters and dialogue in place. Its a lot more fluid to have the setting in your mind physically, and then you can concretely explain how ...



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