Sunday, September 18, 2011

The Importance of Location with Author Scott Tracey & Giveaway

 The awesome Scott Tracey is here with us today talking about the importance of location in writing. We hope you enjoy this guest post and be sure to enter the giveaway for a chance to win your own copy of Witch Eyes below.

Witch Eyes by Scott Tracey
Release Date: September 8, 2011
Publisher: Flux
Genre: YA

The Story: Braden was born with witch eyes: the ability to see the world as it truly is: a blinding explosion of memories, darkness, and magic. The power enables Braden to see through spells and lies, but at the cost of horrible pain.

After a terrifying vision reveals imminent danger for the uncle who raised and instructed him, Braden retreats to Belle Dam, an old city divided by two feuding witch dynasties. As rival family heads Catherine Lansing and Jason Thorpe desperately try to use Braden's powers to unlock Belle Dam's secrets, Braden vows never to become their sacrificial pawn. But everything changes when Braden learns that Jason is his father--and Trey, the enigmatic guy he's falling for, is Catherine's son.

To stop an insidious dark magic from consuming the town, Braden must master his gift—and risk losing the one he loves.

The Importance of Location:  

One of the most important parts of starting a new project, to me, is figuring out where it's set. A book set in Iowa is a different animal than one set in Michigan or Georgia. There are the obvious differences: the weather, the region, land-locked versus coastal; and then there are the less obvious differences: culture, local legends and history, and the atmosphere itself. A winter horror novel set in New Orleans brings to mind a different sense than one set in small town Massachusetts, and both of those are vastly different from a romance in California.

But when it comes down to it, there's two kinds of location. You've got the big picture, which is the state or region where the book is set. As an author, this is important, because it's how we tie the reader down (metaphorically speaking), by giving you something you're familiar with, yet putting our own spin on it. As a reader, knowing where a book is set can not only draw you into the story, but it can sometimes influence what you expect when you read a book. If I'm reading book is set in Seattle, I should be able to smell the rain. And if I'm writing a book in the South during the summer, I'd better bring the heat. Not only that, but a supernatural romance set in NYC is going to sound a lot different than one set in the Gothic South.

Location also comes into play on a smaller level, though, too. The places where the book takes place: homes, schools, stores, parks: all of these can influence and define the story. A town of seven hundred is going to have a much different high school than a town of twenty thousand. Public schools are vastly different from private schools. Rich kids hang out in different places than the kids in band do. And economics plays a part in where the characters live in their particular city.

Characters might gather at a Starbucks if the setting is a city of some size, but if it's a backwaters town in the middle of nowhere, that's not as likely. On the other hand, an isolated small town is much more likely to have that awesome, creepy cemetery. Each location in the setting can bring the book to life, and not only that, but to share something about the characters involved. If the characters hang out in an abandoned building, for example, that says something completely different than if they spend their time at the mall.

Settings and locations are important. They can make the difference between someone liking a book, and loving it.

~~Giveaway~~

Rules:
  •  We are giving away one (1) copy of Witch Eyes thanks to Flux.
  • U.S. Mailing Addresses Only (No P.O. Boxes);
  • Giveaway ends at midnight on 9/24/11;
  • Fill out THIS FORM to enter. 

3 comments:

  1. I absolutely agree. Choosing the correct setting for a book can make all the difference. It can really affect a readers enjoyment if the setting does not read as authentic. I love books that are set in the south, but I can't stand when an author simply uses a southern setting without incorporating some of the feel of that area into the story. Thanks for the giveaway!

    Donna @ The Happy Booker
    ahappybooker at gmail dot com

    ReplyDelete
  2. I definitely agree. There's nothing better than reading a good book that transports you to a new city. But I do love novels set in NYC that just get it right.

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  3. I am always looking for that something in a book that will send my imagination to the location and lets me feel like an observer/friend involved in the story. Thank you for sharing with us today and for the wonderful giveaway opportunity. Witch Eyes has been on my wishlist for a while and I certainly would love to read it:)

    ReplyDelete

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