Favorite Place to Set a Scene

11 Sep

This is the last post of a rolling blog tour on the topic of Favorite Settings. To read previous blog tours, check out My Favorite WebsiteBad Boys, and Janet Evanovich and a Few Sour Plums, among others. At the bottom of this post you’ll find the remaining participants in today’s tour, and a link to the next article in the series.

Of the settings I’ve written about, picking a favorite is like asking me to decide which one of my kids I love more– I can’t do it. Each setting is unique and suited to the story I was writing at the time, and I can’t imagine the story anywhere else.

But while we’re on the subject of settings, let me tell you about the ones I chose and why. Sort of like if you’d asked me about my kids, and I pulled out a wallet full of photos, and now you’re stuck.

Choosing which setting will suit your book is very important, since setting is as important as character, in my humble opinion. Setting should contribute to the overall theme, and be intrinsic to the plot.

I made up the town of Deception Bay, Michigan, for my first novel, Buried Secrets. Practically every character in the book is telling lies, so the name seemed to fit. I also wanted the town to be near water, since the hero likes to sail.

I chose the town of Normal, Illinois, as the setting for my second novel, The Good, the Bad and the Hair. I’ve driven through Normal. There’s nothing unusual about it, which is exactly why it fit the bill. My character Hannah is trying to live a ‘normal’ life in Normal, but everything is stacked against her. I liked the juxtaposition of Normal the town, and Abnormal everything else, including most of my characters and events in the story.

St. Augustine, Florida is the setting for my third novel, Saving Haley. I needed a place that had a lot of history and would lend a ‘spooky’ feel to the story, since the heroine thinks she’s going crazy and the place she’s staying is haunted (or is it?).  St. Augustine is famous for its ghosts. (Betcha didn’t know that.)

I’ll be releasing my fourth novel, A Few Dead Men, this fall. The setting for this story is near and dear to my heart, since it’s Canadian. It takes place in Halifax and Wolfville, Nova Scotia, where I lived for a time. I must say it was much more satisfying writing about a place I’ve lived. I was able to dig deeper into the element of setting in a way I haven’t before.

If you have a favorite setting, I’d love to hear about it. Or is it too hard to choose?

To learn about favorite settings from other mystery authors, check out the other stops on the blog tour:

KT Wagner http://www.northernlightsgothic.com/blog
Kathleen Kaska http://kathleenkaskawrites.blogspot.com
Maggie Toussaint http://mudpiesandmagnolias.blogspot.com
Ryder Islington  http://www.ryderislington.wordpress.com/

12 Responses to “Favorite Place to Set a Scene”

  1. Kathleen Kaska September 12, 2011 at 9:02 am #

    Nancy, Except for your made-up town of Deception Bay (love the name), I’ve been to all your settings. I’ve even spent the night in Normal. I love St. Augustine, so much history, and a perfect place to set a mystery.

    • nancyelizabethlauzon September 12, 2011 at 9:46 am #

      That’s so cool! I want to visit both some day (I only drove through Normal, but what’s not to love about that name?)

  2. Maggie Toussaint September 12, 2011 at 4:02 pm #

    I thought I stopped in earlier, but I must have spaced and missed this blog on the tour. I love your variety of settings, Nancy. Your books sound very interesting. Maggie

  3. auntiemwrites September 13, 2011 at 9:08 pm #

    Nancy, your setting is grand! I’m drawn to England, so my first novel, The Blue Virgin, is set in Oxford. The one I’m revising now, The Green Remains, moves my main character to Cumbria, the beautiful Lake District. They are two of my favorite places on earth!

    • Nancy Lauzon September 14, 2011 at 9:18 am #

      Thanks for stopping by, Marnie! I’ve heard about the Lake District, love to go there some day.

  4. Krista Kennedy Phillips September 14, 2011 at 10:53 am #

    Nancy – I love reading your blog. i’m especially excited to hear that the new (fourth!) novel is set in both Halifax and Wolfville. I’ll be watching for it!

    • nancyelizabethlauzon September 18, 2011 at 7:44 pm #

      Thanks so much, Krista! I’m getting new book covers for all of my books, including that one, so as soon as they’re ready, No. 4 will be a go.

Trackbacks/Pingbacks

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