Bring a physical place to life.
In the opening lines of her short story “Delicate Edible Birds,” Lauren Groff describes Paris as having a dusky skin. She describes archways as throats, street corners as elbows, and the city powered by a thumping heart:
Because it had rained and the rain had caught the black soot of the factories as they burned, Paris in the dark seemed covered by a dusky skin, almost as though it were living. The arches in the facades were the curve of a throat, the street corners elbows, and in the silence Bern could almost hear the warm thumpings of some heart deep beneath the residue of civilization. Perhaps it had always been there, but was audible only now, in the dinless abandoned city. As the last of the evacuees spun through the streets on their bicycles, they cast the puddles up into great wings of dark water behind them. Paris seemed docile as it awaited the Germans.
Now you try, dear writers. Make a physical place—urban or rural, indoor or outdoor—more vivid by giving it human characteristics, as faith carter
do in these noteworthy descriptions of setting.