Creating a city from scratch can be an intimidating task for a fantasy writer — you want your city to feel like a living, breathing place, with its own personality, elements of fun and fantasy, and believable enough and descriptive enough that the reader can imagine themselves plunked down into the middle of it.
Consider some of the best, most vividly written cities in fiction. Closing your eyes, you can see the snow-capped cottages of Hogsmeade that look like illustrations on Christmas cards; you can see the colorful and extraordinary shops of Diagon Alley, cluttered with stacks of cauldrons, barrels of beetle’s eyes, hooting owls in ironwork cages; shoppers in ankle-length Wizard robes. You can see the stone buildings climbing up the mountainside of Gondor, you can see the shifting grass plains of Rohan, can picture the Shire with its farms and flowers and so many green hillocks punctuated with round front doors.
Fantasy villages, towns, and cities are scrumptious to read about, they’re visceral and eye candy and exciting. So, how do you go about creating one such (or many such) cities for your own fantasy novel?