Setting and Scenery: Creating Worlds
July 28, 2007
Avoid using unnecessary settings just for the heck of it. If your story is about suburbia, don't have your characters leaving suburbia unless it fits part of the plot of the story.
If your scene takes place in a classroom, it better look like a classroom, which means that it won't have things that aren't normally in a classroom. If it's a chemistry class, then there should be a periodic table in the background and perhaps a chemical equation on the board, not language charts and paragraphs on the board. A computer repair shop isn't a mechanic's garage, so it would be silly for your character to grab a tire-iron to defend himself unless he brought it in with him.
Do a little research to learn what your setting would look like in the real world.
Draw maps. Draw pictures of your imaginary world and props. Collect photographs of things that you want in your story or of places that inspire you. You may even want to create story boards (i.e. a drawing for every scene).
Consider the Costs
If you're writing a movie script, remember that it's often cheaper to produce a movie that involves a few repeated sets than having to create a new set for each scene.