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Every story takes place somewhere. Setting isn’t just a tidy backdrop, but is integral to the story, a crucial thread that cannot be removed without the story itself unraveling. What is the relationship between setting and characters, its connection to memory, to conflict? How may place evoke mood or build tension? We’ll examine the possible functions of setting, plus consider how a story possesses a “sense of place.” Expect many in-class writing exercises, discussions of craft, and close readings of published work.
Carter Sickels is the author of the novel The Evening Hour, a Finalist for the 2013 Oregon Book Award, the Lambda Literary Debut Fiction Award, and the Publishing Triangle Edmund White Debut Fiction Award. He currently teaches for West Virginia Wesleyan University’s Low-Residency MFA Program.