World Building and Setting

Discussion in 'Fiction Writing' started by Jomz, Aug 28, 2018.

  1. Jomz

    Jomz New Member

    One of my difficulties in writing fiction involves writing about the setting.

    There are times when a simple location is sufficient - wherein you just let the reader know that the characters are someplace - in school, in the forest, in a busy urban street... However, there are times when you would need to specifically paint a detailed location, to help your readers get a better grasp of the world your characters are in. This is most useful for fantasy stories, though mystery and even horror stories can use a more detailed setting, as well.

    Is it bad that I tend to skimp out on writing the setting, and instead focus on the story or characters?

    However, there are times when I feel that I must put more effort into writing details into a particular setting, for I believe it would aid in giving the world more depth and an added sense of reality.

    Instead of writing "Jeremy's house" as the setting, you can describe Jeremy's house in more detail. Is it big or tiny? Does it have one floor, two or more? How big is the yard? Does it have a garage? How well-maintained is it? Does it look new or old?

    These would not only add words to your writing, but would also add more into the character of the person living in the house.

    How do you go about in writing for your setting in fiction?
  2. DavidusCicero

    DavidusCicero New Member

    There must be a reason for "stuff" to be mentioned and that reason better not be "I have to reach a given word quota". If you mention that an old fashioned hunters rifle is there it should be part of a plotline, regardless if its some epic character defining flashback episode of the last big adventure Jeremy had with his late grandpa or just a passing mention that it isn't the right caliber to be involved in the murder case.

    If the reader knows this Jeremy character already very well going into too much detail about the house risks introducing conflicts with what the reader has until now imagined Jeremy and his house to be like for no good reason – making Jeremy a gun owner by adding the rifle remark from above for no story reason might e.g. alienate some of your readers.

    Bring out all the details you need if we just meet this Jeremy character and you e.g. want to describe him by environmental storytelling through. It's one think to say that Jeremy is an avid rock-collector and geologist with a two-story house filled to the brim with rocks in various shapes and forms from all over the world, but there are always other options, too. Depending on the circumstances it might be a lot nicer to let him bring his date Jenny along who upon entering comments "Oh wow, is EACH of these rocks from another of your dig sites?"
  3. ewapc101

    ewapc101 Active Member

    The Rivoli Theater is a historic theateron the eastern side of Indianapolis, Indiana, United States. The theater was built in 1927 and was designed by architect Henry Ziegler Dietz.[2]Originally designed and built as a single screen movie theater by Universal Pictures, it was sold in 1937 and continued to provide motion pictures and live entertainment until its final closure in 1992. Since this time the venue has remained largely vacant.[3] In 2007 the Rivoli Theater was acquired by the Rivoli Center for the Performing Arts, Inc., with the intent to restore and reopen the theater.
  4. kehallo

    kehallo New Member

    Sometimes I write my plot and then go back and add the setting's details. Setting is necessary to ground the story and help solidify the details. I tend to skimp on it during rough drafts, but it's really important. The background the characters dwell in acts like a secondary character. The characters' can be a mirror of their inner turmoil or throw their actions into sharper contrast. Each detail given to the background is really a detail given to the characters, because they're a product of the world they live in.
  5. Jomz

    Jomz New Member

    Thank you for this reply. It is very helpful, and I think I will be using a lot of these in my next writing project.

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