When I was a teenager, I went to my church’s Girls Camp for a week each summer. We stayed in a lodge (formerly a ski lodge) at Brighton, Utah. It had a large dining area and lobby on the main floor and bedrooms for four girls each, upstairs. Showers and bathrooms were down the hall.
I used a similar setting for Mrs. Thomas’s Music Camp in my book, “Music Camp Mystery.” In the book it’s Chestnut Creek Lodge.
This brings me to Hint #3.
Hint #3. Set your story in a place you are familiar with.
It could be a place you’ve visited, stayed, or even a place you’ve lived. As you remember it, you will be able to describe it clearly on your pages. The readers will be drawn into the story and feel like they are there.
In my book, “Music Camp Mystery,” Mrs. Thomas took her students on a field trip to Rainbow Cave. I used Timpanogos Cave in American Fork Canyon, Utah, as a model for Rainbow Cave. It was easy to describe the cave, because I’d been there.
In my book, “Snake River Mystery,” (unpublished) the setting is a log cabin on the Snake River. My family vacationed in that cabin for a couple of weeks one summer when I was a girl. I still have vivid memories of the cabin, forest, and river. It was easy to describe that setting in my book.
Here’s one last example–I was lucky to live in Japan for a couple of years. I used that setting in my book, “Japanese Puzzle Box Mystery (unpublished.) It was easy to describe, because I’s been there.
Hint #3. Set your story in a place you’re familiar with.