My stomping grounds are in central Florida, deep in the subtropical jungles. You do not have much choice, it is under a tree or nothing, so check those trees carefully. If you do find an open prairie that is where everyone else who is out here tonight will be and I like to be stealthy. I like to be far from people. Trees can shield you from rain at first, but then they saturate and then the torrent falls. Rainwater makes branches heavier so falling debris is a problem. The one great benefit is protection from that tropical sun which can burn tarps and tents.
Campfire has to be close to the tent because you want your tent in plain sight at all times. Varmints, two and four legged can get nosy. Last thing you want is to finish eating and come back to a destroyed tent. But it has to be far enough that no spark can reach the tent. We have high winds here that can come up out of nowhere. Toilet, has to be fairly close to you, you just can not go stumbling around in the dark carrying a flashlight, tissue paper, spade while bears, gators and snakes can be anywhere. Dig your holes in the day. A flashlight does not overcome the darkness...everything out there can see a whole better than me in the dark. Also, I have a tight sealed container for urinating when leaving the tent just ain't possible.
Flat ground is deceiving, it can look dry on the surface and be total mud a few inches down. Sometimes, my favorite stealthy deep pit fire just can not be done. Areas here flash flood real quick and suddenly that flat safe area is under 4 inches of water. Last time, we hiked through an area that looked great for camping, only thing it began to rain and soon we were sloshing through a brand new swamp. Still, you have to choose something, we can not even consider lightning. Camp on a small mound and you increase your chances of a strike. Camp away from it and your tent will soon be submerged from runoff from that mound you turned down.
So it is a tradeoff and sometimes you will get unlucky. ShemSeger and others stress the "leave no trace" approach. That is a good rule, I started camping just 18 months ago, came from NYC to Vegas to Florida and although I love it I am always glad to come home. I truly believe that everyone should spend a night or two out there, make them appreciate the benefits of civilization.