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Thursday, April 28, 2011

The Process of Writing: Part Six

In the last entry I dealt with how I go about creating my characters. Before moving on, let me point out that the worksheet included in the last post serves only as a starting-point, and should be added to or subtracted from as needed.

In this issue I am focusing on the setting. Setting simply defined is where and under what conditions your story takes place.  In Francine Rivers’ novel “Redeeming Love” the setting is the 1800’s California Gold Rush era. Juxtapose that to Donna Fletcher Crow’s “A Very Private Grave” in which the setting is modern day England.

In my Nate Richards series, starting with N.H.I., the setting is modern day Treasure Valley in South Western Idaho. As the writer I am able to borrow from what is geographically real and gently mix in the fantastic. This also goes for the culture of the setting. In the Nate Richards series I add a traditional Black Church to the Meridian City backdrop. While no such church exists in Meridian, there is one of this type in Boise. So by using the modern setting I can use very real places and events, but because the story is fiction I can add and subtract as needed to bring the story alive.  

In N.H.I., I combined the cities of two counties to create the fictional metro community of Treasure Valley. This allowed me to keep my story set in Meridian, Idaho, but allowed me to borrow from some of the better known and perhaps more picturesque features of the valley.

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