Narrative Basics Lesson 3: Setting



Stories are set in worlds with physical places and things. 

A cute little cartoon island with trees and rocks and birds and sheep

You might be able to see that real or imagined world in your mind's eye, but how do you paint a picture in someone else’s mind?

For example, here’s a character interacting with something in their world

In the morning, Corinne unwrapped her father’s bandage and found a soft red scab covering her wound. She touched it. It hurt, but not too much.

The JumbiesTracey BaptisteSource

Even in this short simple description, Tracey Baptiste is using details to paint a picture for us.

She tells us about a thing—a scab—but also tells us the scab was under a bandage, that the bandage belonged to Corinne’s father, that it covers a wound, and the scab hurts a little to touch. She's building a tiny world for us.

In this lesson we’ll look at some of these types of detail, so we can describe worlds that we can either see or imagine.

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