SETTING: Where your story takes place

The setting is where your story takes place. It’s more than the town, city, state, country in which your characters exist. It is where they take action. That place has several elements to it. In my novel Suzanna, the first in a trilogy, the story begins in a village at the foothills of the Sangre de Cristro Mountains in northern New Mexico, a unique environment in relative isolation with a small population, all of who know one another’s story. They gossip, talk politics, share good and negative feelings; but it is much more than that. Suzanna, her grandparents, the villagers live with the weather, drought, rain, wind, sun. They have certain beliefs about witchcraft, their history, the stars, the flower and fauna. All this, and more, goes in creating the setting.

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Bilingual, Bi-cultural Writing

I like writing and reading bicultural books that use Spanish words from time to time. Some people call this Spanglish. I really dislike the term Spanglish. The proper term is Code Switching, a gift very few of us possess. The author of, Growing up Spanlish in a recent Santa Fe New Mexico newspaper writes well in this manner well (see my Facebook page). Let us not allow the bastardization of this beautiful language and culture by delegitimizing its unique character.

Read: for those who write or want to write

One way to sharpen your writing skill is to read. Read writers whose style, or stories, you like. Read books in the genre in which you want to write and publish. For example if you want to know about setting, how to write about where your story takes place, read the first two chapters of my latest novel, Poor People’s Flowers.  Image

The role of discipline

The most important and underrated factor in a writer’s success is discipline. Talent and luck always help, but having a consistent writing practice is often the difference between aspiring writers and published writers.  From: Poets & Writers Writing Prompts.