I’m the type of person who cares a lot about logical placement. Even when I was a kid watching sitcoms on TV I always wondered how those bedrooms managed to logically fit in those house facades…then I learned that they were all TV sets, and oh. I spend hours planning out my action scenes to make sure that they make logical sense.
Thus it’s no surprise that I draw floor plans of my characters’ houses / apartments / businesses / general hang out spots.
I have a pretty good memory, but even I struggle with figuring out how exactly one hallway flows into the next or if there’s a door between the bedroom and the bathroom. And I care a lot that it makes sense. I doubt any reader would ever pay attention, but I do. I care a looooot.
Two years ago I bought a graph notebook to draw me up some floor plans. The first couple of apartments I laid out were super basic and simple and, well, easy to do. Then I attempted houses and spent anywhere between 2 – 3 hours realizing that the format I had in my head made no sense logically. Not a fun moment. But I persevered, and with minor changes I managed to come up with logical floor plans that still matched what I had already written in my scenes.
I totally recommend trying this out to authors who have lots of scenes that take place in the same locations over and over again. It helps a lot with choreographing characters and offers just a general sense of direction when writing scenes. Plus, it’s fun! Then again, I play Sims 3 all day and enjoy decorating homes more than anything else. Sooo there you go.
I’ve included a couple of sketches here for you to get a sense of what I’m talking about. I usually include some notes about the location in the negative space if I have any. Also, the ones I have here are new versions transplanted from older notebooks. The “originals” have coloring so I also know what color the furniture is.