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Generating Story Ideas


Updated June 26, 2014

mum and daughter
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One of the hardest things for some writers to do is come up with story ideas. Here are some suggestions to share with your budding authors.
  1. Write a story based on a picture book.

  2. Many books are created for young pre-readers that have no text, just pictures. The pictures provide wonderful clues for a story line. In addition, the pictures are wonderful ways for kids to practice writing descriptions.They can look at the pictures and write out detailed descriptions of what they see.

  3. Write Fan Fiction

  4. We all know what it's like to come to the end of a favorite story. We hate to say goodbye to our favorite characters. We want to know more about their lives. But why wait for the author to keep the characters alive? Kids can think about a new situation for their favorite characters and then imagine what they might do. For example, Harry Potter fans can imagine what it might be like if Harry and his friends visited the United States on Halloween! Would they go trick-or-treating? What would happen?

  5. Play "What if?"

  6. This idea is similar to fan fiction, but it can have wider uses. One approach is to take favorite characters and stories and imagine what would happen if some part of the story changed. For instance, what might have happened if Harry Potter had accepted Malfoy's offer of friendship in the first book? This method can be used for almost anything! What if time machines really existed? What if we could travel through black holes? What if the British had beat the colonists in America? This method can be used for every interest - science, history, anything!

  7. Check the News

  8. Teenagers might want to look at the news and imagine the details of the stories behind the headlines.

  9. Find Sources Online

  10. Generating ideas for stories is a popular topic among writers, so it's not too difficult to find ideas online. Here are a couple of pages with many ideas:
If your child loves to write, nurture it!
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