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A Sense of Place

Some wonderful tips on writing settings by M.A. Ray

Saga of Menyoral


Setting puts flesh on your stories. The way it’s described can work for you or against you, and it can be the difference between bringing the reader into the story and leaving him or her out in the cold.

Here are a few things I’ve learned about building delicious descriptions of setting. I hope you all find them helpful.

  1. Use vivid words. I’ll use southwestern Oklahoma as an example, since I live here. I could say, “It’s flat with occasional hills, and very windy and dry.” But so what? Does that convey the feeling of being there? Not at all, and it’s a little boring, too. What if I said this? “The stinging wind whips hair and dust around my face.”
  2. Choose telling details. What am I going to see here that I wouldn’t see anywhere else? Near where I live, it’s a bizarre mix of…

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Sarah lives on a beautiful half-acre full of beloved trees. She shares her space with three dogs, a snake, and lots of outdoor critters. She is an animist who has studied Druidry, paganism, religions, and metaphysical subjects for 20 years. She has also studied anthropology, history, and mythology academically. She believes firmly in living a spiritual life, not just in having a spiritual practice. She uses her knowledge to help women live a meaningful life they love by aligning with their soul.

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