It’s that time of life when our oldest child needs to visit colleges and decide which campuses and degrees fit her plan. It’s like world building for the real world rather than a paranormal romance novel (and I suppose that makes it more important).
To all who wonder if college visits are worth the time (and/or money) my answer is yes!!!
She was looking at a college that dealt in her (quite specific) major and on paper, it was heaven. Lovely area, recently renovated facilities and labs, and vibrant student life. It seemed like an ideal fit, like the perfect collegiate world, but I’m so glad we went in person to confirm our impression.
I fell in love with the area – and so did she – but the campus, well, it was plastic and superficial. Sure the new buildings were nice and we were awed by spectacular views (we got some great pictures), but the substance, the heart of the campus and student body, seemed to be missing.
I’ve read books like that where the scenery is fabulous, but the story doesn’t flow. The world building for a paranormal romance can be a thing of envy, but the story must have heart. If the characters lack the skills, flaws, depth, and substance to really make the story come alive in my reader’s mind and heart, the pretty backdrop is irrelevant.
World building for a paranormal romance novel – or any novel – must include and involve the characters playing in that world. Much like the plastic campus needed to have more than a polished surface to engage my daughter’s interest (and money), so too the setting, conflict, and characters must come together in the paranormal novel to create a deliciously engaging whole which is greater than any one part.
Live the adventure!