Thursday, October 15, 2009

Location, Location, Location!

Okay so as a writer you have to have a place to put your story. I mean your characters can't just be floating around in a spaceless place doing whatever pleases them. Unless your story is about people floating around in a spaceless place and then that's okay. If that makes sense...anywho moving away from the crazy...how do you know where to place your stories?

For me well I tend to make up places, which is normal. If your story is in a parallel universe or in a different world you can totally do whatever you please. But what if your characters are just stuck in a normal place, or even from a earlier time period? (Because let’s face it you can fudge whatever you want for futuristic novel, which in the end is what makes them fun to read).

I tend to find a place where I think the characters fit in, (type of weather, large town, small town, big city, environment, continent etc.) and then build something up around them to fit the needs of the story as any author does. Of course I'm bad a titles, and names for places, so I tend to find a real town name or something and super impose it on my little fictional haven. Of course I don't put it in the same state or anywhere near the real town or place because if anyone goes to the town or lives there (with the exception of abandoned places because you can write about an abandoned place however you like and no one will know) I'm always afraid I'll get something about it wrong. And I'm a perfectionist, only when I'm writing though, I don't really care about perfection in anything else, sad I know.

But the fear is rooted in the idea that this something will be so wrong that no one will ever think to pick up the novel or story because it is so horrendously off. I've read books where the author put the story in a real place, and in some cases I have known about the real place in question, and its nothing like it was made out to be in the story. That annoys me so much. I mean, though research only goes so far, it's there for a reason, and you should use it, right? Am I over thinking the whole location thing, or is the issue just in my head? Because I've noticed it in published material, and worry it will happen to me. So how do you other authors out there do it? Because I'm going crazy, scratch that I'm already certifiable, I'm progressing deeper into my insanity.

4 comments:

Mariah Irvin said...

The book I'm writing for NaNoWriMo takes place in the Old West (something I'm completely unfamiliar with). Should be interesting.

Hayley said...

It sounds interesting, people underestimate the Old West, but I love it. I mean most movie classics are centered in the Old West, (yes, that is my grandmothers John Wayne movies talking...) I hope NaNo works out for you.

K. M. Walton said...

I did something weird in my fourth novel. I never named the town where it took place. Ever. I did it on purpose because I wanted the reader to picture their town, their school, their neighborhood as they read.

It's on the query roller coaster as we speak, so we'll see if any agents like or hate that idea...

Hayley said...

Hmm...I thought about doing that once, and I tried but its so hard when my characters are going to high school or stuck in their town. I'll try it though, maybe it will work in my post apocalyptic world thats been bouncing around my brain for a few years. Thanks for stopping by my blog :)