About this exercise:
Setting refers to place, time and weather. Kenya is a setting. So is a coffee shop. And the hollow of a tree. A thunderstorm is a setting. So is drizzle. Autumn is setting. So is the middle of the night. Your setting weaves itself between the characters and action to your story. It helps create a particular atmosphere and is closely connected both to your characters and to your plot. Here, we will focus on how setting can develop your characters.
Time: 20 minutes
Write down the name and age of a character (or use one you are working on already).
Write down a word a word to describe how your character is feeling? E.g. lost, alone, angry, excited.
Choose a specific place, a kind of weather and a time that helps to reflect your character’s feelings. It doesn’t need to be to obvious e.g. thunder for anger, you can be more original and subtle too.
Write a paragraph describing your character in that particular place, with that particular weather at that particular time. Don’t tell the reader what your character is feeling, just show it through how your character relates to her setting.
Use this exercise to develop the setting in an existing story or novel.
Turn this paragraph into a story: what happens to your character next? Does the setting change? If so, how and why and what does that tell you about your character.