Setting is a story’s time and place.

You cannot have a story without setting. Setting grounds the entire narrative. 

In books, setting can be very overtly or explicit given to the reader, or it can be alluded to through descriptions of clothing, architecture, weather, topography, and other environmental elements.

When we think of TIME, a story can be set in the present, the past, or the future. In SciFi and fantasy stories, there are alternate realities. This idea goes a bit beyond time and place, so we can include alternate realities in our definition.

So, SETTING conveys:

  • Time (past, present, future, as well as Alternate Reality)
  • Place, which can be a wide-lens view or a planet, a country, a city, and/or it can move into a close-angle view of a city or town, a home, or even the inside of a building or vehicle or single room


Today’s writing prompt is about creating the wide lens view of a setting. If you’re following these prompts, you’ve created a room in a home, and the town in which that house exists.

Now, place that home in its bigger setting. Is it in suburbia? An urban city? Someplace rural? The mountains? By the sea?

Create a sense of place. 


How well do you know your characters?

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Melissa Bourbon is the national bestselling author of more than twenty-eight novels. She is a teacher, coach, podcaster, and writer. She has applied her love of teaching to the creation of WriterSpark Academy, an online school for aspiring and new writers seeking to hone their craft. Learn more about Melissa at her website,