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“You enter the extraordinary by way of the ordinary.” ~Frederick Buechner

Thursday, April 13, 2017

Overview Setting: Interior

Workshop: An Introduction to Writing for Children and Young Adults

A second strong category to influence your setting with authenticity is the Interior. Even when your interior details are backdrop only, they can be used to boost your main atmosphere in your settings. The set-up can be used to affect different characters as well.

Is the location spacious or crowded? Is it a private room or public? How could that impact your character if she is an introvert or an extravert? Or possibly create a stress for a character short on time that has to navigate a busy grocery store or post-office?

What does the floor plan look like and how will that affect your characters’ actions? Is she facing a long flight of stairs, or a crisscross of corridors in a hospital?

How does the color of walls or the lighting affect moods? Are they dull or bright? Could something in the room be a silent symbol? One author I know discovered at the end of her first draft that an ordinary flower plant had become a symbol for her heroine’s story. It only showed up a few times—at the beginning as part of the d├ęcor, in the middle with leaves falling, a little later when she watered it while doing chores, and at the epilogue when it fully bloomed again.

In a more intense situation an interior setting can take on a heavier weight as in a normal school bus that has been hijacked and buried. Now a normally spacious space has become claustrophobic.

After a first draft take a close look at all your physical settings and see where a small detail here or there can enhance one of your story threads.
Action Steps:

1.     Choose one room that has an emotional attachment to your character and draw a rough outline of it re space. Make a few copies.

2.     In one copy make the contents few and in another make it a very cluttered room.

3.     Have one version be light colors and another dark.

4.     Now right a brief scene where your character goes into that room emotionally distraught.

Share: How did she emotionally deal with her situation in relationship to the atmosphere of that room?

Read deep, marcy

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