Dragon, a massive wide cavern, high ceiling, smooth walls from the dragon body scraping the sides, coins, jewels, precious metals, weaponry and other riches scattered on the floor and piled up in adjoining chambers, heat vents, fissures, stalactites and stalagmites…
The crash of water and waves (if located on a cliff face on the ocean’s edge), powerful inhaling and exhaling that reverberates throughout the chamber, the scuff of a foot, the drag of a tail, knocking over a stalagmite with a crash, a metallic slide of metals and coins…
Fire, blood, metal, char, brimstone, the sea, salt, hot stone, musty air, rotten food breath, death
Sour tang of fear, sweat, dry mouth…don’t think you want to stop here for a picnic
Rough handhold climbing up to the lair entrance, stone digging into knees, cutting hands, scraping legs and arms, inside: taking careful steps, picking your way across a floor littered with bones, rock and riches, careful not to disturb anything, pausing to wipe away droplets…
–The words you choose can convey atmosphere and mood.
Example 1: With each exhale, Ceron’s face burned and came close to blistering, but he gritted his teeth and stayed focused on the key resting just beyond the sleeping dragon’s blood-splattered claw. Two more steps and he would be able to free his son, shackled in the antechamber by the giant beast for daring to wander too close to its lair…
–Similes and metaphors create strong imagery when used sparingly.
Example 1: (Metaphor) I glanced back at mouth of the cave and the unblemished blue sky beyond. The realization that this would be the last time I drank in such a sight was a heavy shield to carry, yet at least the burden was mine alone…
Think beyond what a character sees, and provide a sensory feast for readers
Setting is much more than just a backdrop, which is why choosing the right one and describing it well is so important. To help with this, we have expanded and integrated this thesaurus into our online library at One Stop For Writers. Each entry has been enhanced to include possible sources of conflict, people commonly found in these locales, and setting-specific notes and tips, and the collection itself has been augmented to include a whopping 230 entries—all of which have been cross-referenced with our other thesauruses for easy searchability. So if you’re interested in seeing a free sample of this powerful Setting Thesaurus, head on over and register at One Stop.
On the other hand, if you prefer your references in book form, we’ve got you covered, too. The Urban Setting Thesaurus and The Rural Setting Thesaurus are available for purchase in digital and print copies. In addition to the entries, each book contains instructional front matter to help you maximize your settings. With advice on topics like making your setting do double duty and using figurative language to bring them to life, these books offer ample information to help you maximize your settings and write them effectively.