Thursday, April 28, 2016

A to Z Blog Challenge {WR}: X=X Marks the Spot

X Marks the Spot.

That spot is my hometown. I realized, as I began writing the three stories I have in the works, they all take place in a town very similar to my own. I haven't lived in a big city, a farm or in the mountains (real ones like Colorado). So, I go with what I know.

Has anyone been lucky enough to have the opportunity to travel to the area your character lives in and experience it for a few weeks or months? I know well-known authors have been able to travel to do research but some of us self publishers/non-paid authors may not have the opportunity to do this. That's when the Internet is my best friend. I look for the type of house, a specific area on maps so I can picture where my character lives and who they move through their lives in my books.

Do you write about what you know or make your main character's home in a place similar to whatever you have experienced? 


11 comments :

  1. I have a few stories set in and around Boston because it used to be fairly easy for me to get there for a day to visit to get a good feel for everything. Another story is set in a town that resembles my hometown.

    But yes, in general, the Internet is my best friend. Some days, I spend a lot of time looking at maps and real estate listings.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I love Boston. I lived near there for three years and it is easy to get a feel for the place in just a day!

      Delete
  2. My current WIP takes place in NYC, which I've never lived in, but I've visited several times. I just hope I can pull off the setting well enough so that people will actually believe that the characters live there.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Good luck! Maybe they can live in the same apartment the FRIENDS characters did :-)

      Delete
  3. This comment has been removed by the author.

    ReplyDelete
  4. I'm with you - thank goodness for the Internet. We can research our hearts out, and get acceptably close to reality, without leaving our chairs. I was listening to an author recently whose main character in an ongoing series had some skill or other that the author had no familiarity with at all - she based all of her writing on her research without any personal experience at all. Same goes for settings. It would be nice to visit each place in person, and probably would add an extra layer of meaning or detail, but with travel shows and videos online, you can get pretty dang close.

    ReplyDelete
  5. I haven't yet set a story in my hometown (or anything like my hometown), but it's not a bad idea. Stephen King's managed to get a lot of mileage out of his. :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. That is true and if you've ever been to Maine, especially the town he lives in, you'll wonder how he did it. A great writer can do that :-)

      Delete
  6. My mystery novel which I'm writing is set in Denver, Colorado, where I lived and worked for 42 years. I've linked in Indiana for the last 11 years so I'm torn. Do I now move my story to Indiana which that's where I live now, or do I continue in Colorado, which I know so well? Thoughts? Found you thru the A to Z Challenge. Yay, we made it! www.dianeweidenbenner.com

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Go with your instinct, that's my advice! They are two very different places in my head at least. I've only been through Indiana and going to CO this summer!
      Or, you could make up your own place for them to live!

      Delete
    2. Keep it Denver for this story and write your next story in IN :)

      Delete