Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Do Settings Make it Real? by Terry Spear

Whether you want to be or not???

So this is Hawaii...isn't it beautiful? Wouldn't you love to be there? What if I wrote that the hero and heroine looked out at the vista. What might they see? If I describe a little of that, you are there, with them. And you're happy. Because that's what storytelling does. It takes you off of your couch and lands you smack dab into paradise. And this is what we see. Palm fronds, lush green and red vegetation, the blue, blue sky melding with the darker blue ocean.

Now, that can be bad because what if the author plunges you into a dark underground tunnel, and maybe you're claustrophobic, and so is the character? Or what if you're now in Scotland in a drenching downpour about to lose control of your horse, or in a blinding snowstorm seeking shelter before every blood cell freezes?

That's the hazard of reading a book. You could be perfectly comfortable on your couch enjoying a great story, and the next thing you know, you could be fighting to survive. :)

It's NOT the author's fault. It's the characters' fault. You see, they have these goals. They want, they want, they want. And it's not easy. Giving them what they want. All the time.

Love. Romance. Revenge. Justice. Peace. Whatever. They want it and then somehow the author has to give it to them. They make all kinds of wrong choices. You tell them, no, don't go that way. And what do they do? Just like kids, they ignore you. And you say, I told you so. But now it's too late and you have to fix their mistakes.

So here you are as the reader, perfectly fine with them being at home, safe and sound, and they carry you into the wilds of the Amazon, or on a race for your life in the desert--with only a half of a canteen of water left, no oasis in sight, and you need six full canteens to survive.

Do you ever feel you are in the setting of a book? And is that good? Or do you want to get out of it and pronto???

"Giving new meaning to the term alpha male where fantasy IS reality!"


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