Friday, August 12, 2011

Setting and Background in Fiction (Part 3 of 8)

If we make our story take place in a famous place such as Zurich or Athens, we want to be accurate. We also want to give details that most readers won't know. For instance, we might have the hero racing down Station Road in London, trying to elude his abductors. He rushes into the Betford Betting Shop. (I looked up the name and location on the Web.) One or two sentences will give readers not only a sense of place, but many of them haven't heard of a betting shop. That adds to your story.

We don't need vast details about famous cities.
If we insert little-known information, we add value to our story.


  1. That is wonderful advice. Thanks for sharing little details.

  2. Oh, how brilliant! And with the internet, research is faster and more fun than ever. Now I'm curious as to what a betting shop is...

  3. When you invent a place based on a real one but want it far enough removed that it won't be immediately identified & the fictional place will be believable, how far do you go with the details? Can you use some real place names, for instance, & mix made-up ones in with them? I'm thinking like street names or geographical spots but also so-called historical events that never happened in that location? Just curious what you can get away with & what you cannot!


What are your thoughts?