Top Ten Tips for Writing About Place

by Kerryn Goldsworthy


* Remember that ‘place’ is an elastic term: it could mean ‘Australia’ or  ‘Adelaide’ or ‘the Beehive Corner’ or ‘the place I came off my bike when I was ten’.

* When describing a place, try to emphasise the features that are typical of or unique to that place.

* If you’re making up a place-name, make sure that your made-up name is in some way suggestive of what sort of place it is. It could be ‘Peach Gardens’ or ‘Koala Creek’. Or it could be ‘Rivendell’ or ‘Mordor’.

* Use location as your starting point: begin with a tight focus on some object or person that’s significant to the story and then pan out, giving a broader and broader description of the location. You could start with an abandoned half-drunk cocktail and then describe the bar, the hotel, the street, the city.

* Or start with…

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