I realize this is totally subjective, and no opinion is more valid than another, but here goes:

— I'm sick of Florida.
— I'm sick of New Orleans.
— I'm sick of New York City.
— I'm sick of England.
— I'm sick of Scandinavia, much sooner than I expected.
— I'm not quite burned out on L.A., but I see the day coming.
— I'm sick of quaint villages populated by white people only.

— I like the Pacific Northwest.
— I like the West.
— I like small cities with realistic ethnic diversity and realistic problems.
— I like underused locations. How often do you read about mysteries set in Kansas City? Or Dallas? Or Cleveland? Or the Carolinas?

Sub-questions: Where are you from? What informs your taste in settings? Will you ignore an otherwise recommended book if you don't care for the setting?

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Nine Days is set in a small town in central Texas. The fictional town (based on a real town that I once lived in) is ethnically diverse (as was the actual town), and so is my cast of characters. Just for gravy, I'm also attempting to avoid all the sexist crime tropes I can think of.

I write about Texas because I live here and I like it. I wasn't born here but I consider it my home state. I live in a fairly large city (Austin), but I grew up in small and mid-sized Texas towns, so that's what I like to write about. I know them and love them.

My taste in settings is pretty democratic -- I don't think I've ever put a book down because I didn't like the setting, although I have to agree that I'm getting pretty dang sick of NYC and LA.

Maybe you and I should trade manuscript reads, Jim. If you're interested, message me...
My plan is not go out of my way to avoid the common race/gender tropes so much as it is to subvert them or turn them inside out. Still, readers who are inclined to obsess about such things will find them in almost any book, no matter who the writer is, or how well intended.
I am from central Ohio and live there at this time. I lived in Florida for 30 years. I like rural or unamed locations. That way someone can't say the information isn't correct. I dislike large cities for both living and writing.

A book that is in a location that I don't care for that goes into a lot of detail about the location, I wouldn't read, unless it was set in a time period of the 17th or 18th centuries.

Of course, I'm not the person to answer that. I like my settings remote. I rarely read books set in the U.S., for example, but made an exception for the Navajo reservation. I like all parts of Europe and Asia. I like some books set in South America and Africa. I write books set in Japan a thousand years ago.
If the author can make the setting come alive then I don't care where it is. (I've lived in California, Massachusetts, Texas, North Carolina, Washington, DC, Tennessee, and Ohio. Oh, and China for about two years.)
My agent refused to try to sell a thriller of mine set mostly on a farm in rural California, saying NY editors think people don't buy books set in rural places or on farms, saying big city locales are always preferable (and I don't think he meant Cleveland, more the usual NY or SF, etc.).

I recently self-pubbed the book on Amazon. I love it that these publishing beliefs or prejudices can be tested in the public realm now at little to no risk.
I'm with Eric on those, both of his comments. The setting needs to complement the story. Some stories need to be set in New York, or LA, or New Orleans. Not as many as publishers seems to insist there be, but some.
WHEN WRITING: I write about where I want to be. I set my first book in Toronto because I grew up there, and I feel like my protagonist should be from there so I can understand her well. After that, it's purely selfish on my part - if I have to spend a year in the book writing it, I want to be excited to be there. So my 2nd and 3rd books (still in production) are adventures in places I want to go.

WHEN READING: Any book that relies too heavily on setting is likely to bore me. I don't like long descriptions. I like plot and characters and dialogue and great use of language. So if the setting - doesn't matter if it's Manhattan or the middle of nowhere - takes up too much space on the jacket synopsis, I'm probably going to look at a different book. That said, if the plot and writing look interesting, I don't think there's a setting that would deter me. Not even Saskatchewan.
Who gives a shit? Seriously. I'm interested in well-drawn description of just about anyplace, from New York to west-central Wisconsin to Kamchatka to Budapest. The idea that a reader would refuse to read a book set in New York or Miami makes about as much sense as refusing to read a book in which the characters ride in cars instead of using more eco-friendly modes of transportation, or because the book was written by a woman, say.
People rarely "refuse" to read a book. There are no constraints here. It's just that they have preferences. These can change, if there is an overriding reason for it.
I think lots of people give a shit. I was recently in the Seattle Mystery Bookshop with a female friend, also a mystery lover, and we were picking through the shelves when I spotted her reading the back cover copy on one and shove it back onto the shelf with a shake of her head. "What?" I asked, and she replied: "Ten years ago, I probably would have bought up every book by this author ... but I'm tired of the fucking Cotswolds!" That made me laugh, but it stuck with me as well. Because I believe it's true that if a setting doesn't appeal to a reader, the quality of the writing won't matter — because the quality of the writing will never get a chance. Our prejudices matter, however irrational they are. It doesn't have to make sense. Reading tastes are purely subjective, which is why nobody can predict what's going to be a bestseller and what's going to tank. I think it serves us well to better understand why our own works may or may not get a chance with certain readers based on purely superficial reasons. To expect them to rise above their prejudices and give us a fair shake based on the quality of our writing is — right or wrong — asking too much of many of them.
As a writer, you can't worry about the irrational opet peeves of a few readers. For every reader that's had enough of the fucking Cotswolds, there might be a thousand who lap up the Cotswolds like a drunk I saw once after he'd spilled his whole pitcher of Rolling Rock on the bar. For every crank like Dan (and don't get me wrong, I love Dan) who hates books about NYC, there are 8 million New Yorkers who like to read stories set in their city. I'm just sayin'.


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