1. CMastah
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    CMastah Active Member

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    Introducing the fictional world?

    Discussion in 'Setting Development' started by CMastah, Mar 22, 2014.

    Here's the thing, my novel will be taking place in a fictional setting and I was curious, should I go right out and make it obvious or just throw in hints? It'll be clear from the start that this is a fictional setting that includes goblins and such but I wasn't sure if I should throw out the name of the world immediately or ease into it, I wouldn't want the readers to spend time thinking about what the setting is. It ought to be clear that it certainly isn't the present day, given the MC will be immediately be shown swinging a sword, dressed in leather armor but I wasn't sure how much more in the way of details I should give or how else to broach the subject.
     
  2. Wreybies
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    Wreybies The Ops Pops Operations Manager Staff Contest Administrator Supporter Contributor

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    Write some pages introducing the reader to the world, and from those pages flow into the beginning of the story. When you have a few pages of the actual story written, go back and delete the "world introduction". Seriously. Delete it. The story should start with the story, but you might need a little writing leader to get you into the flow, but that leader should be chucked once you have your steam.
     
  3. GingerCoffee
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    GingerCoffee Web Surfer Girl Contributor

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    I agree with @Wreybies. Tell the story (by showing, of course ;) ) and show the world through the story.

    I'm learning as I go so I can give you an example. My story starts in a small village but soon after the protag enters a modern city she's never been to before. I started with some rather run of the mill oos and ahs of what she saw from the flying vehicle she was in but the critique group immediately found that boring.

    The suggestion, make everything, including the scenery, part of the story. Rather than just describe a fantastic future city, have the protag react to it.

    I expected big, but this was a mountain. Buildings blended and merged, tentacles reached in and out, or were those roads? A dark shadow consumed the vehicle as the horizon filled with the looming mass. How in the hell would I ever find my way out of that clutter and back to the forest?​
     
  4. Bryan Romer
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    Bryan Romer Contributing Member Contributor

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    Given your subject matter, I don't thing anyone is going to mistake it for Earth of any period.
     
  5. peachalulu
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    peachalulu Contributing Member Reviewer Contributor

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    Readers want to know about character's first, whose eyes they're going to view this new world through. Let the character take them through landscape by dropping little hints throughout the scene.
     
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  6. jazzabel
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    jazzabel Contributing Member Contributor

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    Write the story as if you are writing it for the world you are describing. In other words, imagine your reader knows everything, or almost everything you know about your world. You can occasionally indulge in a bit of description or explanation, but nothing more than what you would've had to explain to a stranger who's come into town from somewhere else. So the fact goblins exist in the first place, or witches, wizards etc, isn't as shocking because weird creatures exist in his world too, or along those lines. That aids the reader to immerse themselves in the story, pay attention and engage their imagination in order to figure things out and fill in the blanks. Obviously, don't try to trick the reader or deliberately hide facets of your world that inhabitants of that world would know about. That never feels right.
     
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  7. maskedhero
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    maskedhero Active Member

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    Imagine the world already exists. Give us details OF that world throughout the story. Things that need explanation, like a guild's special methods, can be described, but generally the world should flow from your writing, not be introduced to us like a cudgel hitting our head.
     

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