by Adam Huddleston
The blog topic this month is “settings”. The first thing I think about when I think of settings is fantasy fiction. In my opinion, no other genre (save maybe science fiction) can boast of such robust and imaginative world-building as fantasy. When it comes to make-believe worlds, not even the sky is the limit.
The joy (and sometimes overwhelming fear) of the fantasy writer is that they often place their story in a setting of their own creation. This means that the author must imagine the world’s landscape, inhabitants, and history and then place a believable tale within it. This is not as easy as it may seem. The setting must complement the characters and plot of the story, without drawing too much attention away from it.
To give a quick example of my own work, one of my fantasy stories I’m working on exists in a world surrounded by a huge, vertical sea wall. The actual border of their circular, flat planet ends with a wall of water that is hundreds of miles tall. Since gravity must pull the water away from the land, it causes everything (and everyone) to slide sideways toward the world’s border. This allows for some exciting, dangerous action scenes.
No matter what your favorite genre to write is, I highly encourage you to try setting a story in a fantasy setting. It is very fun and definitely strengthens your world-building skills.