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Building the Plot: Pt. 02

This week I want to concentrate on the Setting of our story.

Normally I love setting, as my favorite genre is fantasy, but I have to admit I struggled with this a little bit.

With all the angels gone, I was initially thinking it would be fun to just have a slightly different world from our own. Angels are generally around to help us out, so I wanted a slightly higher mortality and accident rate. I wanted to show a world that still functioned, but it was palpably different from our own.

Then Bael showed up.

I’ve heard other writers talk about this many times. Characters do something unexpected.

Now Bael didn’t really do anything majorly different. He just showed up, and that changed the entire nature of the narrative. It made me ask questions.

If a demon had come through, why is he here? Did he have something to do with the angels leaving? The answer it turns out (at least in my head), was yes. He banished them from the earth.

In my mind, that changed the whole story. Instead of Peter fighting crime in a marginally different world than our own, things have changed drastically.

If Bael banished the angels, it stands to reason that they can be un-banished. Secondly, if the only thing keeping our world from being like it used to be was the angels being gone, then it might go back to the way it was if we can bring them back. That gives some hope for the world.

Lastly, and more importantly, it means that Bael is our antagonist. He’s actively doing bad things in the world, and that means Peter and now Celeste, have to go defeat him.

So that makes him the boss of the world so to speak. I imagine a world where demons have been running the show for a while. I’m not going to go down the path of wide-spread carnage. No body-filled streets, teeming with demons at every turn.

No, I imagine a ruthless dictator-based society where the government has essentially been taken over by demons. Each city is ran by one, but they still need humans for something, and that something is blood sacrifice to keep their spell open.

Yes. Bael is sacrificing humans, spilling their blood, to keep either a portal or a spell open to keep the angels from coming back. Wherever they are currently trapped, he has them there.

Okay, so that’s more about character, but it does dictate our world. I imagine this world being like a Gotham. Lots of lawlessness. People are genuinely terrified of leaving their homes, but they have to if they still want money and food. So people are still having children. People still have jobs. People still need to work. Transportation still goes.

The drudgery of normal life is there, but we are under new management!

Not exactly a ray of sunshine, but it’s something.

So let’s talk more about the setting:

I’m going to set this story in a place called New Harlem.

Near-future alternate history. Not quite post apocalyptic. Just imagine all the politicians deciding one day that they are going to seize power and start making their jobs permanent. They get to dictate all new laws and we have to follow them no matter what or we the humans are punished.

It’s hardly forced labor camps, but it’s brutal living here. Gritty and dirty It’s every person for themselves.

I think that’s about enough for setting. Hopefully I painted a clear picture of what the world is like being run by demons.

Now that we’ve looked at characters and setting, next week we will look at the plot of the story, or at least what I have of it. We still have a ways left in our journey so buckle in.

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