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Write Great Fiction Series by James Scott Bell

Well described settings bring invaluable atmosphere to any story — and when you create an effective sense of place, it can feel as though another character has been added to the narrative. This four-week online course, run by our partners at Faber Academy, guides you through key techniques for building convincing story worlds, and explores how different writers use location to bring their characters and stories alive.

VAT where applicable. Tutor Tom Bromley will introduce you to the skills and techniques that will help you bring your story world to life. Over two sessions, Tom will explain the importance of creating a vivid location for your stories. The alumni is a friendly group of writers who support each other as they continue to explore and develop their writing.

If you'd like to continue on to another Faber Academy course, you'll receive a discount. Please get in touch for more details.

This has been an absolutely fantastic group, and I would want to remain in touch. The whole point of the course did seem to come together for me. Setting, detail, research, I had been doing this in previous work but this showed me I need to keep this in mind as I write. More importantly on a personal note I have started writing again.

I am in the process of writing a memoir in short-story style. Do you know of a program I may apply that would assist with writing and publishing and reap rewards as my book is published and becomes popular. I think I am writing about a time that will interest many people.

I have published three stories while in a work shop with Sam Quinones, who did the editing—He is a very helpful editor as he ask great questions and does not rewrite your story. I use my first story as a measuring-stick for my writing. Sam is busy promoting his best selling books, so the workshop is no longer available. If you are interested in reading my work, you can go to tellyourtruetale.

Than you for reading this and I await for your response. Fundamentals are the big ideas captured on storyboards, mind maps, outlines, or the […]. Save my name, email, and website in this browser for the next time I comment. This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed. BookBaby Blog. Building Your Scene-Quality Map. Can You Trigger Creativity? Crafting The Perfect Chapter. Selling to Non-Bookstore Retailers.

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The Importance of Setting In Your Story

Amanda Hocking Did. Self-published Authors Are Empowered Authors. A self-publishing strategy eBook for indie authors. Do Bookstore Events Matter? Please enter your comment! Please enter your name here. The space of sky above us was the colour of ever-changing violet and towards it the lamps of the street lifted their feeble lanterns. The cold air stung us and we played till our bodies glowed.


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Our shouts echoed in the silent streets. The career of our play brought us through the dark muddy lanes behind the houses where we ran the gauntlet of the rough tribes from the cottages, to the back doors of the dark dripping gardens where odours arose from the ashpits, to the dark odorous stables where a coachman smoothed and combed the horse or shook music from the buckled harness. The narrator describes the way the school looks sight , the way the cold air feels touch , the way the shouts echoed sound , and the odours of the ashpits smell.

It can be difficult to keep track of settings in your head, so using visual aids is a great way to help you remember where everything is and exactly what it looks like. The easier you can visualise your setting, the better you'll be able to describe it. If your setting is a real location, you can use maps and images to keep track more easily, but if your setting is entirely fictional, it can be a little more difficult.

Drawing your own map is a great way to visualise where each location fits within your setting as a whole.

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You can also collate images that inspire your setting to create a 'mood board', either physically with printed images, or through online platforms such as Pinterest. Most people don't want to read whole paragraphs of description all at once, so it's important that you spread your descriptions evenly throughout your story.

A good way to do this is to use action to describe your settings. Consider a poor, teenage girl visiting her wealthy best friend's house for the first time. Instead of describing everything she sees as soon as she walks in, write snippets of description as she moves through the setting. Instead of stating there are luxurious mirrors, describe how the girl feels seeing her reflection in such a grand room. During the whole of a dull, dark, and soundless day in the autumn of the year, when the clouds hung oppressively low in the heavens, I had been passing alone, on horseback, through a singularly dreary tract of country; and at length found myself, as the shades of the evening drew on, within view of the melancholy House of Usher.

Where Am I? Setting the Scene

Here, the narrator describes their surroundings as they journey through it. This passage would be a lot less effective if it read as a paragraph of description only. If you're stuck at how to introduce a new setting into your work, thinking of your writing as a movie or television show can help you get started. If you're a Friends fan, you would have seen this formula many times. Every scene in Central Perk starts with an establishing shot from outside the cafe. This shot lets the audience know where the scene will take place. Finally, the camera zooms into medium shots and close-ups that focus on the characters.