Monday, November 18, 2013

Prewriting: Step 4 - Large Settings

Since I’ll be spending so much of November working on my NaNoWriMo project, I thought I’d show you a bit of my prewriting process.  This is what I did during October.  This post is about creating the major settings.

The biggest setting in this novel is Tadrol’s Villa on the northern beach.  It’s partially a school, but it also houses children.  I use setting to figure out the story as well, and there was a major plot point discovered while creating this place.  I’m not the greatest artist, but I do like to have a picture of what’s going on. 
My sister introduced me to Google Sketch, and I like to use it when I create large settings.  Here’s a few pictures of Tadrol’s Villa. 

I’ve used Google Sketch for many other settings.  Once I needed to create a setting using specific elements.  I needed a lot of water, a lot of dirt, a city on a raised surface and an area where people can stray dry while it’s raining.  Here’s what I created.  Once I could see it, it was so much easier to write.

I wrote a story where the characters spent the majority of their lives in a castle.  I had to know where everything was, the kitchen, the stables, the main entrance.  With Google Sketch, I was able to lay it all out so that my characters didn't get lost.  And more importantly, I didn't get lost while they ran around the castle.

What do you use to create your settings?  Do you just have the image in your head?