Use sensory details to create a vivid, immersive setting. These are descriptions that appeal to the five senses: sight, sound, smell, touch and taste.
For example, instead of just saying “It was a sunny day at the beach,” you could write, “The sun blazed in the clear blue sky, warming the golden sand. The salty sea air filled my nostrils, and the distant sound of waves crashing against the shore echoed in my ears.”
As you describe a setting, imagine you’re there and try to capture all the sensory details you would experience.
The setting can contribute to the mood, theme or symbolism of the story.
Think about what mood, theme or symbolism you want to convey, and choose a setting that helps to express this.
The setting can influence character behaviour and plot development. Characters living in a harsh, survivalist environment might be tough and resourceful. A story set in a school might involve plots about friendship, rivalry or academic pressure.
Consider how your setting shapes your characters and their actions, as well as the events of your story.
When writing about a specific setting, it’s important to use language and terminology that accurately and vividly convey that environment. This not only helps to create a more immersive experience for the reader, but it also adds authenticity to your writing.
For example, if your story is set on a sailing ship, you would want to use nautical terms such as “starboard,” “port,” “bow,” and “stern.” If your story is set in a hospital, you would use medical terminology. Research your setting to ensure you’re using appropriate and accurate language and terminology.