Article Index


Everything is somewhere, and describing that place serves two important functions. First, it permits your readers to discover the sights, sounds, smells, the whole physical environment. Descriptive detail enriches the environmental texture, making it fuller and more vivid. The scene is ren­dered and invites readers to enter it imaginatively.

Also, "where" can show how setting shapes events. How was the battle's outcome affected by the fact that it took place in a steep-walled canyon with only one exit? How was the family reunion influenced by its taking place for the first time at Uncle Ted's house? Might the crawdaddies have turned out differ­ently if you'd cooked them at home in your own kitchen?


Subtopics of Where

What is the immediate location?
What is its size?
What is its shape?
What are its boundaries?
Of what larger area is it a part?
What does it resemble?
How do people perceive it?
What psychological or emotional associations does it have?
What is its history?
What are its dominant sights, smells, sounds?
How is the place influenced by the participants?
How do these events happen to be occurring in this place?


Use the question of "where" to orient your readers and help them know not only where things are happening but what this place is like and why it is of importance.