Tuesday, January 28, 2014

How to Use Setting as a Character

 Setting can add loads of flavor to a story, so much so that it can often become a character in the story. You can use setting to convey feelings to the reader without writing those feelings. How does your MC feel about the events that take place within a scene?

 I want you to utilize these feelings in your writing and setting details. Is he empty? Cold? Furious? Maybe she is happy, determined, or heartbroken. How can you pull some setting details into the story to convey these feelings? Make the surroundings describe the emotions. This can be as simple as one word, one phrase, or one sentence. Or if pacing allows, you can use the setting to the full advantage and put the reader right in the middle of emotions by only the settings.

As an example, if your MC is sad, the setting around him/her can be an expression of the sadness. Maybe it can be raining, or flowers can be wilted, or the room may be dark or undecorated. On the flip side, if your MC is angry, the setting should be written in a way that anger is expressed, such as with rolling waves, a thunder storm, loud music.

These examples are very cliche, I know. Only you know your character and the circumstances in your story. You can use this to your advantage and make your setting unique and amazing.




How have you used setting as a "character" in your writing?

8 comments:

  1. Make the setting describe the emotion - good tip!

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    1. Thank you Alex! I've been on a setting kick lately;)

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  2. I really like the idea of having setting be a character. Great post!

    Christi Corbett

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    1. Thank you Christi! How are you doing? I hope things are great for you!

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  3. Yes. That's the simple answer to your question. Setting is always and essential character in my stories. Without a fully developed place, the story would be playing in front of a cardboard cut out. Not good, right?

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    1. I love developing a wonderful setting for my characters to explore!

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  4. On my to-do list: I want to write a story where the setting is the total reverse of what my character is feeling and see what that looks like. Of course, it needs to be the right story...

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    1. That would be an interesting idea. Not sure how it would work, though. Let me know how it turns out.

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