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  1. #1
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    Trouble Creating a Fantasy Environment

    Hey there, the novel I am currently pouring all my sweat, blood and tears into is going very well story and character-wise, however, I am having some severe issues with setting. The general gist is that the story takes place in OUR world, present day however witches walk the earth, known to society although not fully accepted. I have different covens based throughout Earth - some in Scotland, England, South America, China etc that are mentioned. The thing I am struggling with is deciding what part of the world it is actually set in. Do you think it takes away from the reality of it being set in our world if it is set in made up city in, say, America? Or should I set it in a "real" city such as New York or New London?
    I just feel that by creating a city you have the advantage of being able to set your imagination free and describe it how you see it, without describing an actual real city and being limited by the reality of it all.
    Any advice or thoughts are very much appreciated!



  2. #2
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    I am having the same problem with the novel I am writing. Finally, I came to a conclusion that the reader may enjoy it more if it is fantasy with a slight touch of reality, i.e. real city such as New York. I think that way, the reader can relate more to your book, and also get the fantasy joy from it. I certainly enjoy reading novels that are fiction, with a bit of reality settings.. There are writers however, that invented their own worlds, classic example is Tolkien's lord of the rings, and he was very successful.

  3. #3
    Senior Member Lea Zalas's Avatar
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    Becca, if you can create a whole fictional city, and that's what you want to do, then go for it. I almost always create fictional settings as most real cities don't provide all the building foundations needed for my stories.

    It's fiction, you can write it however you want.

  4. #4
    Senior Member Lea Zalas's Avatar
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    One last caveat, you have to be good at world-building. There's nothing worse than reading a story, and the background setting is blah.

  5. #5
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    When Orson Wells made his film of Franz Kafka's "The Trial", he filmed in four major European cities, merging them into one. Taking the best scenery from some of your favorite locations could work very well for you.

  6. #6
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    I was thinking about creating a fictional city for my novel but I have decided on a real one that has a lot of features that support the plot. Plus I think I can make the story seem more authentic. Not sure how well I can create a fake city.

  7. #7
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    Perhaps with the alternate timeline there would be alternate cities, or differences in, say, their New York compared to ours. You can use an existing city as a base and then change it to suit the world and story.

  8. #8
    Senior Member Keith .'s Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Becca Allan View Post
    Trouble Creating a Fantasy Environment
    Jell-O. I always begin with Jell-O.

    Sorry, coudln't resist. If you plan to create from scratch or piece several places together I'd suggest you sketch a rough map. Nothing elaborate, but when you're close to the story it's harder to see inconsistancies that jump off the page at fresh readers. Luck.
    ________________________________________________

    People seldom do what they believe in. They do what is convenient, then repent.
    - Bob Dylan

  9. #9
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    think of the place you love the most where you go holidaying and change its name.

  10. #10
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    If I am creating a new world I practice and throw around ideas by simply writing a sensory piece. Like this:

    The wind blew through a forsaken field, the grass blackened with fire of the past. War had destroyed the land years ago, wars that shook the earth. Now the forests were stumps, the skies were grey, the clouds all red with gas. The flowers cried out in fear, the lone wolves all howled in sorrow. The wind told a mournful tale, low, simple, filled with emotion. The angles added there own harmony, light yet haunting, sad yet with an underlying hint of hope. The hope, though, was more of a wistful drea than a foreshadowment of times to come.

    If you wish to create fantasy in our environment you must decide what, not where, your story is.

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