Tuesday with Dan Brown returns us to the power of location:
Location for my current novel is an ongoing struggle and I’ve sought out the advice of other best sellers. Dan Brown visits location in a similar way to David Mamet. David spoke about location sickness and Dan’s MasterClass lesson gives power to location.
If you’re struggle with a location (like me), then Dan tells you to think of a location as a character. Think about setting a conversation at the local diner, and then changing it to a famous museum under a black widow sculpture. The point he makes is that location creates mood.
He went on to say that location affects the reader’s reaction and can create more interest. The diner is every day life but an exotic location can make your reader sit forward with curiosity. He uses location to build suspense and create structure. This propels your words forward and the scenes begin to write themselves.
He also shares a danger with location. He warns that writers shouldn’t fall in love with their locations too much or your thriller might turn into a travel journal. He hit on a point of my first introduction to reach a small town in the Midwest. I had to take a step back and ask if my love for travel interfered with my love for telling stories. As Dan says, take a step back and ask if the story is about your characters or your location.
His point is that location is a tool, another layer but it’s not the main focus of the story. Your audience reads to learn about your characters. The setting is the fuzz around them that’s a little bit out of focus.
I hope this helps the rest of you as your complete your novel.
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