Setting Thesaurus Entry: Farms

Sight

Rambling ranch house, barn, silo, chicken coop, fenced-off green pastures, rows of growing produce, scarecrow, gardens, fruit orchard, sunflowers, pond, horses, cows, goats, sheep, chickens, turkeys, geese, dogs, cats, corn, wheat, tomatoes, carrots, potatoes, onions, beans, peas, squash, pumpkins, tractors, farm machinery, newly-furrowed dirt, rocking chairs on the porch, tire swing, farmers in overalls/flannel shirts/jeans/boots/thick gloves, milking pails, pitchforks, hay bales, canned produce, stacks of firewood, granaries, tractors, bobcat, rototillers, bailing machine, swather, grain auger, feedlots, pitchforks, shovels, axes, rakes, rope, horse tack, pig pen, water trough, yellow canola fields, barley, fescue, timothy hay, alfalfa, brush piles, root rakes, plows, fire pits, sheds, sagging fences, derelict buildings, broken down trucks and farm equipment, weeds, trees, outhouse, family dog, coyotes, bears, deer, wolves, moose, elk, foxes, rabbits, mice, hornets' nest, birds, animal scat, squirrels scrambling across buildings and tree to tree, irrigation sprinklers, brass dinner bell

Sounds

Chickens clucking/scratching at the ground, roosters cawing, horse whinnies, cows lowwing, sheep/goats baa-ing, creaky buildings, horse hooves shuffling through hay or stomping through a barn, pigs rooting for fodder, the wind shushing through hay fields and trees, leaves rustling, mice skittering in the barn walls, birds fluttering as they roost, howls of night creatures (coyotes, wolves, etc) the yip of a fox, the thunk of throwing down a hay bale from the loft, the screech of birds of prey, the roar of machinery starting up, the sound of a plow turning the earth and breaking through roots, the crackle of campfires, trees falling, chainsaws, axe chopping wood, flies buzzing

Smells

Manure, growing crops, flowering crops (Canola, fruit trees, etc), pine needles, fresh hay, musty barns, dust, dirt, mildew, warm earth, musky animal hides, gasoline, motor oil, fertilizers, wildflowers, burning barrels, campfires, rotting vegetation or garden compost, sweat

Tastes

Chewing on young sweet grass, chewing tobacco, cigarettes, a carrot pulled from the ground, sweat, dirt, clean, cold water, potatoes roasted in foil in the coals of a campfire, hot dogs done over the fire, fresh fruit and vegetables, tart wild cranberries, sweet Saskatoon berries strawberries and raspberries, teeth gritty from blowing dust as you work the fields, coffee from a canteen, thirst

Touch

Crumbling nuggets of clay in the soil, dusty soil, the splash of cold water on the neck after a hard day's labor, sweat-stiff clothes, dirty hands, grit under the fingernails, the feathery tops of green timothy hay, the stiff bristles of barley, thorns, brambles, smooth wooden rails around the horse corral, callouses on the hands, blisters, rope burns, chapped lips and face, a sunburned neck, a cold glass of lemonade


Helpful hints:

--The words you choose can convey atmosphere and mood.

Example 1:

I never liked working the field than ran next to the church's burial ground. During plowing season, the deep furrows of dark soil the tractor churned up reminded me of freshly turned graves.

Example 2:

I stood in the middle of the cornfield, impossibly green and tall, and listened. No cars rushed past on the freeway, no screeching sirens heralded a stranger's pain and suffering. Only wind, blessed wind, ruffled through the shiny stalks, bringing the promise of gold-ripe ears for the table, sweet and crisp.

--Similes and metaphors create strong imagery when used sparingly.

Example 1: (Simile)

Wild sunflowers lined the dusty farm road, their heads nodding in the wake of our car like a cheerful welcoming committee.

Example 2: (Metaphor)

The red, weather-beaten ford truck roosted on its axles at the edge of the overgrown timothy field, a worn out rooster to old to crow the sun awake.

5 comments:

Donna said...

I have to say I'm loving these setting thesaurus entries. I *heart* you guys. I really do.

I have a request for a setting entry. I'm going to have a series set at a sleep away camp (that coincides very closely with a seaside amusement park!). I've done a little bit of research and asked for others experience but I've never been to a sleep away camp before. Would it be possible to get a setting thesaurus for something like that? Pretty please? I'll wrangle the zombies for a day . . .

Angela said...

Sure, we could do a 'kid camp' setting. I've never been on a sleep-away camp...not sure about Becca, but we can try to fake it and all you guys can tell us if we hit the mark or not. :-)

Kelly said...

I've always loved photos of farm silhouettes with a sunset.
Awesome descriptive words!

Becca said...

I went to sleep away camp as a kid. We can do that :).

Emina said...

I've used the emotion thesaurus countlessly!
Thanks for doing all this. :)

*walks away from blog moo-ing* Farms... @_@

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