Discussion in 'Plot Development' started by Wade_John, Jun 10, 2009.
Is it permissible to put like 3 fictious city in a story?
Wade_John, you need to elaborate. In fantasy writing then, by all means, add fictitious cities in your story.
But if you're writing a drama or something else set specifically in this world, even if it is fiction, I would hesitate to include any fictitious cities. Towns would probably be permissable, but cities are rather large and a reader may want to know that the city exists.
No. It violates writing general law 1447A.12:
That, or Article 3(8) of the Creative Writing Charter:
And of course, paragraph B34/6, line 34, section Q, of the General Decree Regarding Fictional License and Authorship:
...all parties involved swear that fictional cities are to be strictly limited to a discernable and specific amount as based on the story involved, dependant on the setting and basic underlying philosophy of the world of the aforementioned story, unless of course those come together and would require precisely three (3) fictional cities, in which case all parties involved swear that they will get very cross and start throwing sharp objects at passers-by...
I sure hope it's permissible, as I will need to do so for my fantasy novel.
In a "real world" story, fictitious cities may actually be preferred if you are writing anything unsavory about them. Can you imagine reading a horror-mystery about a sadistic sex fiend murderer that takes place in your home town? Eick!
I think the most important thing would be to craft the cities in such a way that they feel complete and necessary to your plot/world. What did you have in mind?
Ever read Calvino's INVISIBLE CITIES? I'd say it's entirely permissible. Maybe even delightful!
A year ago I tried to make a story with more than three fictious cities... I haven't seen my mom since then.
Damn that General Decree Regarding Fictional License and Authorship.
what's 'fictious' mean?... is it akin to 'fractious'?
You do realize that the previous posts are intended to be good-natured teasing? The better questions, why wouldn't it be permissible to have a bunch of invented cities?
so meaning those rules are jokes? or true?
i'm australian, but i want to write a story based on California (USA), but i've never been there. What do you think?
Its pretty hard...I tried to write about London...didn't even come close to pulling it off, and the exercise has kinda shown me that you really need to spend time in that place and really understand it before you can write convincingly about it.
Sometimes i feel funny when let's say i write a fiction story about Melbourne or Sydney. I reckon it is pretty legal though, to write something about the place that we have never seen, because in some books they didn't describe very clearly about the place, but only the landmarks (houses, tower, and etc)
It's perfectly legal to write about anywhere, whether you've been there or not.
And you can have any events happen there - no town or city council is going to sue an author for setting a fictional crime in a fictional version of their town or city.
Oh, and what about Lake Wobegon--maybe the most famous fictional town in the U.S. (surely so for Minnesota). I didn't know for years that Garrison Keillor's remarkable invention wasn't the "real" setting for his fabulous stories.
california is a very large state, with several major cities and a range of geographical areas that include deserts, both tropical beach and forbidding rocky seashores, forests, mountains, plains... and a population that includes movie stars, illegal aliens and new age practitioners, along with a huge variety of indigenous tribal peoples...
so, when you say 'california' which one do you mean?
and how do you intend to learn enough about it to write about it believably?
I personally like making my own cities/towns. It allows me alot of room to work with and an opprotunity to create background for it.
All very true. And remember that California is one of the more showie states in the union. It's not like you were writing about things happening in Ohio, a state with which even the average American is not terribly familiar if not from there or the surrounding areas. You might get away with a larger range of artistic license there. I'm American and can tell you I would have a bit of trouble placing Ohio on a blank map, but no trouble at all drawing a fairly accurate border for California and placing the major cities in reasonably correct locations.
Know what I mean?
If all else fails, just have a parallel universe in which there is a planet strikingly similar to our own Earth and happens to have state called California in a country serendipitously called the United States of America. Then you can name the cities what ever you want, and also have said aliens governing alongside the Governator.
perhaps the alternative is to adapt the setting to the plot.
I think the research would be easy, study the social and economic nature of a California city of your choice and then connect it to the situation of your character. For instance there's the thought of a romantic comedy of two young twenty somethings, who as a back story might be struggling to become financially independent or advance and mature career-wise in competitive and hyper expensive San Francisco.
You might end up with a thinly veiled reproduction or a generic sunbelt city to provide a mundane American setting. who knows.
Of course those "rules" are jokes. If you have the skill to do it, there is no reason not to. Comic books and cartoons are full of made-up cities. No reason novels can't. In fact, many are. I just read a good that has a setting that's a big mishmash of time periods and geographic settings, and no real cities that ever existed.
Separate names with a comma.