I’ve posted before on the importance of creating well-developed characters, but don’t forget they need an interesting world to live in. The settings in a novel should be perceptible to the reader, in that they should easily be able to visualize the environment the characters move around in, complete with sounds, smells, and textures.
Sometimes it’s useful to sketch out the building, room, or city where the action takes place. You don’t want the diamond-shaped window your main character gazes out of each morning while he sips coffee to magically move from the left side of the living room to the back of the house. When I wrote the first book of my Petal Pushers Mystery Series, I spent about ten minutes drawing a sloppy floor plan of the flower shop which is the main setting, and I’m still referring back to it as I write the third book, to make sure I get all the details correct.
Pinterest is a fun way to gather ideas and details for your settings. You can find hundreds of doorknobs and window styles, pictures from any city you’re thinking about including, not to even mention all the house interiors and exteriors. Just create your own board and pin away.
How do you invent your settings? Or is there a particular place from a book that stands out in you mind, like Harry Potter’s Hogwarts and Diagon Alley ?