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Realistic Fiction Story Ideas: 50+ Prompts to Get You Started

For some writers, it's easy to come up with a story about space aliens, vampires, superheroes, or magical beings. But what if you're looking to write a more grounded, realistic short story or book? Well, you might need some realistic fiction story ideas. Luckily, that's just what we have for you in this article. We'll talk about different ways to come up with realistic fiction ideas, and we'll provide you with a list of realistic fiction story prompts to get you going.

Let's get going!

Table of contents

As the name suggests, realistic fiction defines fictional stories that are grounded in reality. There are believable characters , the situations are easily recognizable, and the conflicts are genuine. These storylines can take place at any time, but they're usually contemporary to the author's life. A realistic fiction tale may seem like a true story, but it's not.

Realistic fiction is not a genre of its own. There is some definite overlap with other genres , like literary fiction and historical fiction. The main characters can be anyone from high school kids to elderly adults. Even children can be major players in a realistic fiction story. But one thing has to hold true: they need to be realistic characters in realistic settings.

Coming Up With Realistic Fiction Story Ideas

There are about as many ways to come up with story ideas as there are writers. Obviously, no one can tell you what to write, but you can get inspiration from anywhere. And the following tips should help do just that.

Writing with an overarching theme in mind can help get the ideas rolling. And there are some common themes in realistic fiction that have held true over the years.

You may have noticed that all these themes are very human. Of course, you could argue that every story is, at its core, human. But these themes are especially human because they're about struggles that people from all walks of life have to deal with. They're about humans dealing with very human problems . If you keep that in mind, you won't go wrong while crafting your realistic story.

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Remember that characters in realistic fiction won't have superpowers, magical abilities, or the ability to read other people's thoughts. They won't live in a futuristic science fiction civilization. They're just people, which means you can take inspiration from real life .

Try to nail down some character specifics for your protagonist first. Will she be an aging woman who just lost her husband of forty years? Will he be an accountant who saves a young boy's life on his way to work?

Your main character should absolutely have a story arc , so think about what you want that arc to be. Uplifting stories generally have a positive arc with a relatively happy ending. But, like life, there's no guarantee of a happy ending in realistic fiction.

Also, think about some traits or quirks you want your main character to have. Not only physical traits, but beliefs, habits, and compulsions, as well . Check out this article for more on making believable characters .

The following prompts are designed to get the ideas flowing. You can choose a writing prompt and stick close to it, or you can let it take you in any direction you please. The story you end up with may look nothing like the writing prompt you started with! Let each prompt be the story idea that sparks a novel or a short story.

1. Write a story about a character learning that the most important aspect of a relationship isn't what she once thought it was.

2. Write a story about a group of close friends becoming a family after one of their own passes away.

3. Explore the meaning of love through the eyes of two different characters from opposite sides of the world.

4. Write about a character learning about self-fulfillment vs happiness the hard way.

5. Write about an old couple finally going on a train trip through Europe in an effort to save their marriage.

6. Write a story about a character who struggles with self-esteem and vanity.

7. Explore where true confidence comes from.

8. Write a story about characters learning what's truly important as they move from adolescence to adulthood.

9. Write about a woman who meets the love of her life as a result of the 9/11 attacks.

10. Explore the importance of learning to help others during tough times.

11. Write a story in the form of a personal narrative from the perspective of a cult leader.

12. Explore the life of a fictional 19th-century suffragette.

13. Weave the story arcs of several seemingly disparate characters into one surprise ending where they all get what they've been searching for — together.

14. Write a story about a character who loses one of their five senses but learns to live better for it.

15. Write about a character overcoming drug addiction.

16. Write about a character who willfully decides to turn around their philosophy about life, learning to live with intention.

17. Write a story about an author who struggles with writing until something drastic happens in their life.

18. Explore where morals come from and why there's such a big wide range of them.

19. Explore a situation (either real or fictional) in which the majority was wrong about something that affected people's lives.

20. Write a story about a character learning that his concept of love is unhealthy.

21. Write about a family of refugees struggling to survive as they flee their war-torn country.

22. Write a story about an aging athlete who does the impossible.

23. Write about two characters struggling to shift their priorities and keep their relationship intact as they age.

24. Explore a character's trip through the criminal justice system as she is wrongfully convicted of a crime.

25. Write about an entrepreneur's journey to start a small business while his larger competitor sabotages him.

26. Write about a man's journey to return a lost child to his parents.

27. Write about a character learning to love herself before she can love anyone else.

28. Explore the implications of obsession.

29. Write about two characters who used to be best friends when they were kids reconnecting after many years.

30. Start your story with a small moment that has outsized and unforeseen consequences.

31. Write about a teenager who runs away from home after an argument with his parents.

32. Write about the last citizens of a dying town, struggling to revitalize the area.

33. Explore a historic earthquake or natural disaster through the eyes of fictional characters experiencing it.

34. Write about two children who are accidentally left at an amusement park.

35. Write a story about characters during the Great Depression.

36. Write about a dispute between neighbors that gets quickly out of hand.

37. Explore the meaning of Christmas through the eyes of a character who has just lost her family.

38. Explore the trials and tribulations of a character who was devastated by the 2008 financial crisis.

39. Write about a person who leaves everything behind to join a cult (e.g. Peoples Temple or Heaven's Gate).

40. Explore the implications of a husband who is caught spending time with a son he's just learned about.

41. Write a story about parents who struggle with a teenager who has mental health issues.

42. Write a story about siblings who struggle to deal with the mental and physical deterioration of one or both parents.

43. Write a story about a kid who has to deal with bullying at his new school.

44. Write a real-life fairy tale without the magic. Set it in modern times.

45. Explore the high-stakes corporate world through the eyes of a woman who encounters a glass ceiling.

46. Write about a poll worker who is accused of doctoring ballots during a particularly virulent election.

47. Explore the implications of a gender reassignment operation through the eyes of the person undergoing the operation.

48. Write a story about a young woman who struggles with anxiety as she makes her way through the world.

49. Write a story about a pair of identical twins who have to learn to live their own lives after spending so much time together as children.

50. Write a story about a town that suffers a severe earthquake.

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In the realistic fiction genre, good writing is a combination of compelling story elements , characters that feel real, and situations that are easily recognizable. Of course, a knack for narrative writing is also a plus. Fortunately, all these things can be learned.

But in the competitive fiction market, you need more than just a great story to succeed . For the best chance of success, you need to position the book into the correct categories and ensure you have the best metadata so readers can find it.

And the easiest way to do this is with Publisher Rocket. If you find a story idea that you like, you can vet it with Publisher Rocket, ensuring that the category isn't too competitive. Publisher Rocket can also tell you if there is a demand for the type of realistic fiction story you're going to write.

This tool does the heavy lifting for you, searching through Amazon to bring you information on keywords, categories, and competition. Learn more about Publisher Rocket here .

Each writer has their own writing process, but the prompts and tips above should help you get into the creative flow. Whether you use a prompt as the spark of inspiration for a full-length book or for a short story idea doesn't really matter. Many great realistic fiction writers got good with short stories before moving on to novels. What matters is that you stay consistent and keep writing. The more you write, the better you'll get!

Dave Chesson

When I’m not sipping tea with princesses or lightsaber dueling with little Jedi, I’m a book marketing nut. Having consulted multiple publishing companies and NYT best-selling authors, I created Kindlepreneur to help authors sell more books. I’ve even been called “The Kindlepreneur” by Amazon publicly, and I’m here to help you with your author journey.

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The Best Realistic Fiction Writing Prompts to Inspire Your Imagination

By: Author Paul Jenkins

Posted on October 21, 2022

Categories Writing , Inspiration , Storytelling

Do you love writing stories but sometimes find yourself struggling with ideas? Are you looking for a way to jumpstart your imagination and develop new story ideas that are both realistic and interesting? If so, then you need to try using writing prompts. Writing prompts are simply short phrases or sentences that provide a starting point for your creativity. They can inspire fiction stories, nonfiction articles, poems, or even journal entries. This blog post will share some of the best realistic fiction writing prompts to help get your creative juices flowing!

20 Realistic Fiction Story Ideas

Making Your Work of Fiction Realistic

Realistic fiction is a genre of writing that focuses on telling stories that could realistically happen. This means that the events in the story, the plot, and the characters are all plausible, given the setting. However, this doesn’t mean realistic fiction is boring – far from it! Many of the most popular stories are realistic fiction. To write realistic fiction, there are certain elements you should keep in mind.

A work of fiction is only as good as its ability to suspend disbelief. For a reader to truly become engrossed in your story, they have to be able to believe that the world you’ve created is real. But how do you achieve this?

Several elements contribute to the realism of a work of fiction. First and foremost, the setting must be believable. This means doing your research and ensuring the details of time and place are accurate. Even if you’re writing fantasy or sci-fi, there should be an internal logic to the world you’ve created.

Secondly, your characters must be three-dimensional and relatable. Even if they’re aliens or animals, readers should be able to see themselves in your characters somehow. Make them feel real by giving them flaws and vulnerabilities. No one is perfect, and neither should your characters be.

And finally, the plot should be complex and unpredictable. This doesn’t mean that everything needs to be wrapped up in a neat little bow at the end—in fact, open-ended endings can often be more realistic—but it should make sense within the context of your story. Keep your readers guessing by subverting their expectations whenever possible.

Modern Realistic Fiction Examples to Keep You Writing

You always look for new story ideas if you’re anything like me. A great way to get the wheels turning is to read examples of modern realistic fiction and see how other writers tackle relevant issues in today’s world. Here are a few of my recent favorites:

Exit West by Mohsin Hamid

In Exit West, Mohsin Hamid tells the story of Saeed and Nadia, two young lovers living in an unnamed country torn apart by civil war. To escape the violence, they use “doors” that transport them to different places worldwide. This novel deals with themes of love, loss, and what it means to be a refugee in today’s world. It’s a beautiful and heart-wrenching story that will stay with you long after you finish reading.

Days Without End by Sebastian Barry

Sebastian Barry’s novel tells the story of Thomas McNulty, an Irish immigrant who comes to America in 1854. He quickly finds himself caught up in the Civil War, where he meets John Cole, a young man who will become his lifelong friend and lover. This book deals with themes of identity, love, and survival against all odds. It’s a beautifully written book that will leave you eager to read more of Sebastian Barry’s work.

Behold the Dreamers by Imbolo Mbue

Imbolo Mbue’s debut novel tells the story of Jende Jonga, a Cameroonian immigrant who moves to New York City for a better life for himself and his family. He gets a job working for Lehman Brothers bank executive Clark Edwards, but when Lehman Brothers collapsed during the financial crisis of 2008, Jende’s world is turned upside down. This novel deals with themes of immigration, class, and what it means to chase the American dream. It’s an engaging and thought-provoking read that I highly recommend.

When Does Fiction Writing Become Realistic?

It’s a question that has stumped writers for centuries: at what point does fiction writing become realistic? Is it when the characters seem like real people? Is it when the story feels like something that could happen? As is often the case with difficult questions, the answer is yes and no. Keep reading to find out what we mean.

To understand how fiction can become realistic, we must first understand what we mean by “realistic.” Regarding writing, realism is the quality or condition of representing things as they are. This means that realistic fiction must exhibit some degree of fidelity to reality. However, this does not mean that all realistic fiction must be based on real events or people. Rather, realism in fiction is achieved when the story feels believable and true to life.

So, when does fiction writing become realistic? There is no easy answer, as it depends on various factors, including the writer’s style, the piece’s genre, and the story’s overall tone. That being said, certain elements can make any work of fiction feel more realistic. These include but are not limited to:

What Is a Narrative Perspective and Why Should Writers Care?

Narrative perspective is the angle or point of view from which a story is told. There are three main types of narrative perspective: first person, second person, and third person. Each has its benefits and drawbacks.

As a writer, it is important to know the different narrative perspectives to choose the best one for your story. The wrong perspective can make your story feel disjointed or confusing, so it is important to choose carefully.

First Person Perspective

The first-person perspective is when the story is told from the point of view of one of the characters in the story. The benefit of the first-person perspective is that it allows readers to feel closer to the character as they are experiencing the story along with them.

The downside of the first-person perspective is that it can be difficult to maintain suspense because readers already know what the character is thinking and feeling. Additionally, the first-person point of view can be restrictive because only events that happen to the narrator can be included in the story.

An example of a book written in the first person perspective is The Catcher in the Rye by J.D. Salinger.

Second Person Perspective

The second-person perspective is when the story is told from the point of view of an outside observer who addresses the reader directly as “you.” This type of point of view is rarely used in fiction but can be found in some works of nonfiction and poetry.

The benefit of the second-person perspective is that it creates a sense of immediacy and intimacy between the reader and the text. The downside of the second-person point of view is that it can be overly didactic or moralistic, which turns off some readers.

An example of a book written in the second-person perspective is How to Win Friends and Influence People by Dale Carnegie.

Third-Person Perspective

The third-person point of view is when the story is told from an outside observer’s standpoint by someone who refers to the characters as “he,” “she,” or “them.” This is the most common type of narrative perspective used in fiction.

The benefit of the third-person point of view is that it provides flexibility because the narrator can move between different characters’ thoughts and feelings relatively easily. Additionally, the third-person point of view helps create distance between readers and characters, which can help create suspense or keep readers from becoming too emotionally attached to any one character.

The downside of the third-person point of view is that it can be less intimate than first-person or second-person narratives since readers are not experiencing events with the characters but are observers. Additionally, the third-person point of view can feel detached or clinical if not done well.

An example book written in the third-person point of view would be To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee.

As you can see, each type of narrative has its benefits and drawbacks. As a writer, it’s important to choose wisely based on what effect you are hoping to achieve with your story.

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75 Of The Best Fiction Writing Prompts For All Writers

What separates the casual fiction writer from the professional one is the commitment to daily writing. But sometimes it’s more of a challenge to get the words flowing.

If nothing triggered you today, and if your mind is playing hopscotch with ideas, fiction writing prompts can get you past the brain block into full writing mode.

The following lists are fiction writing prompts for adults and realistic fiction writing prompts , and while there’s nothing NSFW ahead, the fiction writing ideas are best suited to books written for mature readers.

Here’s how to use these writing prompts:

75 Fiction Writing Prompts and Realistic Fiction Writing Prompts

Try one of these 75 fiction writing prompts to improve your creative writing . Some of these are realistic fiction writing prompts, while others have a more fantasy or mystery bent to them.

Choose the prompt that most inspires you, and start writing!

1. This superhero lives on the streets. While the people she saves are safe and warm, she wanders alone, exposed to the elements. She’s asexual, so she’s not looking for a mate, but she wouldn’t mind having someone to watch her back.

2. An unknown spacecraft has sent a rain of unknown elements into the atmosphere, and soon every flower that blooms releases a new, sentient being into the air. And they’re all connected — except for one, whose connection to the hive mind is severed somehow before the opening of his flower. All his fellow, winged warriors have a plan for the people of Earth; he’s the only one looking for a way to save them.

3. He promised me becoming a zombie wouldn’t change him. He had a solution that would preserve his personality and make it possible for him to protect those he loved..

4. A new modern apartment complex is now open, and you’re one of the first to apply for one of its one-bedroom luxury apartments. Less than a week after you move in, tenants start disappearing. Then someone leaves a gift basket at your door….

5. Someone leaves a package with a new, loaded smartphone and a cryptic note in your mailbox. That night, you get a call on that phone, and you answer it. A voice on the other end asks, “Ready to change your life?”

6. You get a chill from something while standing in a grocery store checkout line, and someone cries out and points a finger at you, backing away. “Did anyone else see that?” she asks in a panicky voice, grabbing her baby and heading out the door without her groceries.

7. You left the windows open last night to cool the house after a 90 degree summer day. You wake up to an icy chill and snow blowing in. You soon learn that a catastrophic event has brought on a new ice age. It just so happens you know something that could reverse the freeze before humans become extinct from exposure and starvation.

8. You love how you get when a creative idea takes hold of you, but your loved ones do not. In fact, one by one, they write you off, though you can’t remember why. Then, one evening, the unthinkable happens, and your latest creative idea takes on a life of its own.

9. Your friend just committed suicide, and soon after the funeral, the letters start coming, sent by someone who knew your friend and who (apparently) knows where you live. This someone blames you for your friend’s death, and she won’t stop until you pay for it.

10. Your best friend is suffering from a life-threatening allergic reaction, and there’s no epi pen. As his airways swell shut and his heart stops, there’s no one around to help, and you scream in desperation. That’s when you hear a sound in your own voice that you’ve never heard before. Seconds later, your friend gasps and scrambles to his feet, all signs of swelling gone.

11. Your fiance’s family has staged an intervention to bully you into changing your beliefs and teaching your children to embrace their way of life — and your fiance says nothing in your defense.

12. Your supermodel-thin friend barely survives a terrible car accident, but it changes her. The happy-go-lucky girl with the racecar metabolism and the hot boyfriend has morphed into a moody but more empathetic girl who quickly grows out of her wardrobe and becomes the target of cruel jokes.

13. A predatory classmate ends up dead in your backyard just hours after making unwanted advances to you in the school library. Part of him is missing.

14. Write a story from the point of view of the villain, but don’t reveal the narrator as the villain until the end.

Related: 15 Tips To Help You Write Better And Attract More Readers

15. On Valentine’s Day (which you never celebrate), you receive a surprise anonymous package with a box of licorice all-sorts. The slogan on the side of the box reads, “Everyone is somebody’s favorite.” The last person who called you his favorite died a year ago.

16. You go to sleep one night in an immaculate, luxury apartment and wake up in a small, dingy loft apartment that is full of stacks of newspapers and magazines, elaborately arranged to form the walls of a labyrinth.

17. You’re given the chance to go back in time to save the life of your best friend, but the price is a mission only you can carry out as the doppelganger of a mass murderer’s close confidant. Your mission is to make sure he takes a trip that will lead him into a trap.

18. You write a novel with a main character who has telepathic abilities. You start having dreams about this character, who wants you all to himself. His first token of affection is to punish your neighbor, who has openly criticized your book.

19. Your quirky, potty-mouthed Aunt Em has come to live with you, and the first thing she does is rearrange the kitchen and claim the role of chef and home renovator. You’re fine with it until she hires an assistant, who just happens to be the apartment manager’s recently fired son.

20. You inherit a house from an uncle but decide to rent it out rather than living in it. After interviewing several applicants, you agree to rent it to two brothers…

21. For as long as you can remember, every time you feel panicked, you’ve found yourself quietly singing “Jingle Bells.” You’re about to find out why, and it will change everything.

22. A homeless man is attacked in your neighborhood and sustains a serious head injury. You get him to the hospital, and they save his life, but upon his discharge from the hospital, he starts making money more quickly than you thought was even possible.

23. A stray animal shows up at your door — no tags or anything — and after feeding it, you decide to adopt it. That night, when a stranger comes to your door, you find out the animal is not what it appears to be.

24. You start taking a new dietary supplement you learned about from a late-night commercial, and it does everything it promised — and more.

25. You’re on your way home after work, and you see a strange light up ahead. You get closer, and you see what looks like a black hole about to swallow up your apartment complex. You look up to see your roommate on the balcony taking pictures of it.

26. You go to sleep alone and wake up very pregnant. After checking the calendar and vomiting a few times, you call in sick and schedule an appointment for an ultrasound. Then your boyfriend shows up.

27. A strange plant appears in your window planter, and when its solitary bloom opens, impossible things start happening.

28. You wake up a different gender but with similar facial features.

29. You visit your estranged father and learn some things about him that change the way you see yourself — and everyone else. Turns out, he keeps a low profile for a reason.

30. Your kid starts manifesting a strange, new ability (or no longer hiding it from you), and you know it’s just a matter of time before he attracts unwanted attention. And you’re afraid of what he can do to protect you both — and how it could change him.

31. You’ve always had freakishly good night vision, but with that comes an extreme sensitivity to light. You live like a mole, working overnight shifts and keeping the windows of your apartment covered in blackout curtains. You’ve even disabled the light switches. So, when a thief breaks in, you make him regret it. And it starts something.

32. Your eyes are brown with flecks of green that intensify when you get a sudden chill or come close to remembering something that changed you as a child. Someone notices the intense green in your eyes one day and calls you a freak. He looks familiar.

33. You discover an ability that puts you (more) at odds with your in-laws, and you learn of their plan to get your husband to divorce you and get full custody of your two children.

34. You sign up for a wine delivery service, and while the cases are always left at your door, things start changing in your house. Though you never drink to excess, you start losing chunks of time. And the wine is better than anything you’ve ever tasted.

35. You come home one day and find someone else living there who swears she’s lived there for years. When you look for proof that she’s lying, you find proof to the contrary.

36. You’re making your usual breakfast when you suddenly find you can’t stomach the thought of eating it. When you put a name to your new craving, it scares you. But it won’t go away.

Related: How to Outline A Nonfiction Book

37. You find a ring while walking in the park. The stones aren’t diamonds, and you at first suspect it’s a piece of junk jewelry from the previous night’s Halloween revels. But you like it enough to keep it. No one is more surprised than you when it saves your life.

38. An unknown relative shows up and tells you something you didn’t know about your mother’s family history — and the power that went with it.

39. You’ve started your NaNoWriMo project, and it’s off to a decent start. But when you open the file the next day, you see much more written for it, and the writing is terrible. Then you see that the story is still developing, and while the writing makes your head hurt, the story is drawing you in. Literally.

40. You go to your closet to get a change of clothes for the day before taking a shower, and you find a huge selection of designer clothes (tags still attached) that weren’t there before.

41. You sign up for a class at a local gym, and when you meet the instructor, she seems familiar — and not in a good way.

42. Your kid takes home a Chromebook from school, and one evening you see him staring at the screen, looking entranced. He takes a sudden interest in keeping his room immaculate and volunteering as a member of a new political candidate’s campaign staff.

43. You’ve just given birth to a surprisingly healthy baby two months before the due date, but your husband has inexplicably abandoned you both, and a generous stranger has learned of your situation and offered to help you out and fill the void.

44. Your mother shows up at your door asking for help. Something has taken residence at her home, and she doesn’t feel safe there anymore. You visit the house on your own, and find someone living there who asks, “Where did Mom go?”

45. You finally find a responsible roommate to share the cost of a new luxury apartment. The problem? He knows everything about you — and there’s no reason why he should.

46. You don’t remember the last time you slept for longer than an hour at a time, and you see things others don’t. The things you see that others don’t are causing accidents, and when you try to prevent one, you end up getting blamed for it.

47. Your 12-year-old daughter goes to use the bathroom at the hospital while you’re both visiting her older sister. When she comes back, she seems visibly unsettled, but that gives way to an eery calm and unshakable confidence that her sister will make a full recovery.

48. After experiencing your first nighttime paralysis, you start to see changes in your body. Soon, those changes will be impossible to hide, and a new acquaintance surprises you by making accurate guesses about what you’ve been going through.

49. When you’re about to kill a spider, your kid stops you, catches it, and runs outside to free it. You think maybe killing the non-native spider would have been kinder than putting it outside in the frost-covered grass, but your kid knows something you don’t.

50. It’s Halloween, and your neighbor dresses up as the president and tries to repair his reputation by volunteering at a homeless shelter. Unfortunately, the costume takes over, and he starts firing the other volunteers, one of whom decides to give their homeless guests a Halloween spectacle they won’t forget.

51. Your routine doctor appointment takes a sinister turn when your doc tells you he could put you higher on the waiting list for a liver transplant if you’d pay his ex a visit and help him set a trap for her.

52. Your new smartphone is so much faster than your old one — much faster than you expected from a discounted return. Then you start getting messages made up of symbols you don’t recognize. They resemble hieroglyphs.

53. You’re a high schooler, and today’s lunch is unexpectedly delicious — so delicious that you go back for the seconds. Someone in the kitchen is watching and writing in a notebook.

54. You’re constantly attracting unwanted attention, and you meet someone who knows why. It’s not just your looks that make you unignorable. You’re actually sending out a signal that those around you can’t help responding to. Your new acquaintance offers to train you, so you’ll make better use of your power.

55. You’re sick to death of the clutter in your house, and through a magazine ad, you meet someone who says he can give you the power to instantly transform any room to match a picture you can see in front of you or in your mind’s eye. The only price is one minute of memory from each day.

56. You win a two-week vacation in a real castle (somewhere overseas) with airfare, transportation, and meals, included — along with other surprises. One of them wants to make sure you never leave.

57. You move into a house that has a treehouse out back in one of the tallest, oldest trees. You don’t know until you explore it that the treehouse changes to better suit its occupant. The tree and its house have accepted you. But what does it expect of you?

58. You find an abandoned cabin that is perfect for use as a writer’s getaway, and after some preparations, you settle in for a two-week’ reprieve from city life. The animals aren’t as shy as you expect them to be, though, and they seem to know something about the cabin that you don’t.

59. Your car goes over the edge and down a steep hill. All you remember is the flash of light and the sound of glass breaking before you open your eyes. You check your kids, but none of them answer, and your phone, which had half a charge just minutes ago, is completely dead and unresponsive.

60. You’re shopping for a new computer, and you find one on eBay that the owner says was a gift that he used only briefly before he upgraded to a MacBook. You buy it and revel in its blinding speed and special features. It wakes you that night with a loud beep and prompts you with a single sentence on the screen, “Will you play with me?”

61. Chocolate and wine have gotten you through many a break-up, but this one is harder than most. You wonder why, and a gift from this SO stares you in the face, reminding you of how different your relationship was from those you’ve had with others..

62. Your neighbor has ordered furniture for you from IKEA, and you’re not sure how to deal with it. You love the couch, but you don’t have the budget for it, and you barely know your new neighbor, who seems to have unlimited funds but spends it unpredictably.

63. One of your aunts has died leaving you her pet ______, who helps you cut the toxic people out of your life by scaring them away. One of the few visitors this pet will tolerate is someone you’ve barely noticed but who intuitively knows about and anonymously meets the needs of others in the apartment building.

64. You go fishing in the lake behind your house, and when your hook catches on something, you pull it up. It turns out to be the body of a murder victim, and when the lake is further searched, other bodies are found. Twelve other houses surround the lake, and the police suspect you as much as any of the other residents.

65. You’re renovating your basement and remove a wall that was put in place by one of the previous owners. Behind it is a garbage bag full of cash, and when you examine it, you find it to be genuine.

66. Your spouse tells other Catholics that he knew you were the one when he found out your confirmation saint was the same saint he prayed to for a good Catholic wife. Meanwhile, you’re questioning beliefs you used to take for granted.

67. You wake up to the burglar alarm, and before you can see who has broken in, someone puts a pillowcase over your head and forces you up and out the door.

68. You get a job at your favorite coffee shop, and you meet some local authors, one of whom learns of your book and invites you to their group. They meet in what used to be the living room of a house rumored to be haunted.

69. You can barely make out how many fingers you’re holding up until an elderly neighbor with perfect eyesight shares a secret with you. But there’s a price to pay.

70. You go to sleep listening to static on your radio, which can’t pick up any AM stations. You find out one night, when your bladder wakes you up, that it’s picking up something other than static.

71. You bid on and win an old record player and record collection at an auction. You don’t expect the music to affect you as profoundly as it does and your family thinks you’re just trying to make up for the amount you spent on it. You’re not.

72. You get new glasses at the new eye clinic in town, and they allow you to see better than ever. In fact, when you want to, you can see minute detail from a great distance and microscopic detail up close. This is how you find out your sister’s mole is a malignant melanoma. You also avoid being poisoned by a spiteful coworker. Your fascination with frogs and your large collection of them has made close relationships a challenge.

73. You listen to an audio file designed to make you more creative, and you go into a trance and write a book that people the world over can’t get enough of. Then a visitor asks you if you listened to the entire recording. When you admit to having stopped the recording before it was finished, the visitor smiles in relief and tells you not to listen to the end and to delete the file.

74. When a favorite aunt dies, you inherit a bookstore with an apartment on the upper floor. You look at the finances and realize you have to let go of one of your three employees.

75. You check out a house you like and find moths in every room. The realtor tells you it shouldn’t be a problem to get rid of them but that the house is completely free of other pests — including spiders (which are a huge problem in the area). You buy the house.

Did you enjoy these realistic fiction writing prompts?

Keep this list handy whenever you need a writing prompt to unlock your creativity and kickstart your daily writing.

In fact, you may find ideas for several novels or stories that you can write down the road. Take one of these ideas and begin to flesh out an outline and characters for your story. Let your imagination take you on a journey that may lead to your bestselling book!

Here are 75 Writing Prompts to Inspire Your Book Ideas. fantasy writing prompts | daily writing prompts | fiction writing prompts | creative writing prompts | #writing #writingtips #writingcommunity #writingprompts #writinginspiration #author #amwriting #selfpublishing

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Realistic fiction writing prompts for authors of short stories or novels


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Private Notes

realistic fiction essay topics

While watching the new photorealistic version of The Lion King, my nephew turned to his mom and asked "Is this a true story?" Cutie!!!

Besides some of Elton John's greatest musical numbers, the plot of The Lion King is fairly realistic. The relationship between different animal species, the herd mentality, and certainly the circle of life - which reminds me, not every hero has to have superpowers or alien contact to embark on an exciting and challenging journey. There are many great stories based on successes and failures that aren't quite true but could be. Below are some (human-centered) realistic fiction scenarios that just might prompt your next compelling adventure.

1. MISSED CONNECTION - write about one person's quest to find someone they met briefly. It could be as romantic as two strangers catching eyes across a train platform or as random as a traveler determined to return a lost hat.

2. MAKEOVER - write about a grand makeover, whether of a person or building, interior or exterior

3. REFUGEE - write about a family forced to escape their land

4. SPIRITUAL AWAKENING - write about a confirming experience that connected a person to God

5. CAUGHT IN THE ACT - write about a person caught in a double life as a performer of some kind

6. ADOPTION - write about someone finding out that they were adopted, or finding their birth parents

7. END IS BEGINNING - write based on the last sentence of your favorite realistic fiction or non-fiction book

8. A SPECIAL CLUB - write about someone creating an unusual club or committee

9. BUSINESS DEALINGS - write about the ups and downs of starting a small business

10. GOING VIRAL - write about a person who wakes up to find their post unintentionally went viral

11. FAN FANTASY - write about how a chance encounter on social media leds a fan to meeting their favorite celebrity in real life

12. BETTER WITH AGE - write about an elderly person who breaks a sports record

13. AWAKENED SENSES - write about someone who experiences sound or sight for the first time through technology

14. NEXT BIG THING - write about a family who comes up with the next big invention

15. MISTAKEN IDENTITY - write about a person who takes advantage of being mistaken for someone else

ANDREA HOPE is a poet, editor, and world citizen, whose works have won acclaim in North America, Europe, and the Middle East. Her poetry books To Mother and Will You Break the Silence? are available on Amazon.

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400+ Writing Prompts: 16+ Genres to Start Your BEST Story

Posted on Mar 3, 2023

by Bella Rose Pope

Creative writing prompts are the missing link all writers need…whether you’re writing for fun or looking to write an amazing novel and live full time off your fiction writing like students in our Fundamentals of Fiction program .

Picture this: your imagination is a match…and you need to light it.

There are a number of different methods of setting a match ablaze to come up with story ideas . You can swipe it on the ground, against a rough surface, use your own nail, or even light it with another match that’s already burning.

But the best (and easiest) way? Striking it against the matchbox it came in. That’s what it’s for, after all.

This list is the matchbox with which you can strike your match. We have over 400 original writing prompts you can use across several different genres.

Here are the fiction writing prompts we have:

Fantasy Writing Prompts

Sci-fi writing prompts, dystopian writing prompts, contemporary writing prompts, romance writing prompts.

Mystery Writing Prompts

Reddit writing prompts.

These are the nonfiction writing prompts:

Save This Resource NOW for Quick Reference Later…

200+ Fiction Writing Prompts In the Most Profitable Genres

Come up with your NEXT great book idea with over 200 unique writing prompts spanning 8 different genres. Use for a story, scene, character inspo, and more!

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Creative Writing Prompts are Your Matchbox

All you need is one writing prompt to light your imaginative fire and you can burn through a book idea , formulating the plot and all with just a single prompt. You can even write a powerful short story with a small prompt!

And that’s exactly what we’re here to help you with, whether you’re writing as a hobby or looking to publish a novel that’s destined to be included on every bibliophile’s gift wish list .

Real writers know that you can easily come up with bits and fragments of a story but the overarching plot can be tricky to drum up.

You know what you want to write about: life’s happenings, a tragedy in your life, a deep memoir , magic, advanced science, realistic contemporary stories, but you just can’t figure out how to go from the genre and character development to a writing a novel .

200+ Creative Writing Prompts for Fiction Book Ideas

If you’re ready to take the plunge and finally start writing a book like you’ve always talked about, we can help you get started.

Something to keep in mind is that creative writing is largely driven by tone , style, characters, and your plot .

These are 100% original, never-before-seen creative writing prompts you won’t find anywhere else.

But if you’re ready to start right now , here are a few to set the creative wheel of your imagination in motion so you can find your writing style and master your craft.

Fantasy is all about magic, creatures, and abilities. The possibilities with a fantasy world are nearly endless.

You can literally make up anything you want. This is why fantasy is my preferred genre to write in.

Here are 30 original fantasy writing prompts:

How to Write Fantasy Stories Fantasy is a wildly popular genre. There are countless fantasy worlds out there and that means you really have to focus on being unique within your world. Here are a few ideas to do these writing prompts justice when writing your fantasy novel : Create 100% unique cultures Avoid these worldbuilding mistakes Develop slang for your world based on what’s popular/trending/makes sense with the time it takes place Do not use common phrases like “train of thought” if trains don’t exist in your world Use unique names Don’t forget about diversity! Opt for an unexpected and different journey and outcome (many fantasy novels follow a similar formula) Write what you want to read! Schedule your writing time and follow your deadlines if you really want to finish

Here are 30 Sci-Fi Creative Writing Prompts :

How to Write Science Fiction This genre is another very popular one, and for good reason. You can imagine a realistic, yet very different future than what we currently have. Here are a few guidelines when creating your science fiction world from these writing prompts: Decide if the story will take place in this world or a completely unique one Create realistic advanced technology that your characters would actually use Avoid modern-day slang unless the story takes place here Create your own slang. A great example of this is in Jenna Moreci’s  sci-fi novel,  EVE: The Awakening pictured below) “Dynamic” is the slang the author created in this instance. It fits with the sci-fi world and further creates a sense of realism and it pulls the reader deeper into the world.

As this genre gains more and more popularity, you may find yourself wondering what a certain post-apocalyptic world might look like.

Why not write about it?

Here are 30 dystopian creative writing prompts:

How to write Dystopian books Dystopian novels are one of the biggest trends sweeping the literary world. With books like The Handmaid’s Tale stirring more post-apocalyptic stories, it’s easy to get stuck in the same mindset as many other dystopian novelists. Here are a few things to keep in mind if you want to write dystopian using these writing prompts: Think way outside of the box Use literary elements from your story’s past to form their present Paint a very clear picture of everyday life for your character from the very first page Get creative with the laws, culture, and customs Don’t just “go with the flow”: The Handmaid’s Tale is so popular largely due to the fact that it’s unique. Not many people would have thought of a world that was overrun by a religion – and that’s what makes it so tantalizing; it’s unexpected.

Some people don’t necessarily want to escape from this world. In fact, they just want to escape from their own life for a little bit but prefer to read something realistic, something they can relate to.

Contemporary writing is all about forming connections with readers.

Here are 28 contemporary writing prompts:

How to Write in the Contemporary genre I personally believe contemporary can be one of the hardest genres to write because you have the least wiggle room when it comes to creativity. Everything has to be realistic in today’s society. Here are a few tips to remember for writing contemporary from the very talented author of Little Birds and Writing Youtuber , Hannah Lee Kidder: “Realistic dialogue is important. All the characters should sound different from one another, their vernacular should make sense for their background, and the writer should read it out loud.” “Tiny details are hella dope in descriptions. It should be so specific and vivid that when the reader finishes the story, they feel like they’ve lost a bit of reality.” “Imagining characters complexly is also important. Work on understanding real people. If you understand people and why they do what they do, you can understand characters and what they do” Create a conflict many can relate to or sympathize with Spend a lot of time on the character arc as many contemporary novels are primarily character-driven

Contemporary Writing Exercise From Hannah Lee Kidder: Sit in public and pick a random person, then write a completely made-up story about them.

Here are 30 romance writing prompts:

How to Write Romance Even though romance is an extremely popular genre doesn’t mean you can be lazy when it comes to the actual romance and creative writing prompts isn’t always enough to help you develop a full-blown romance. People read romance to be invested, to feel something real. Consider these additional tips when writing romance: NEVER romanticize abuse as “love” (AKA, a jealous boyfriend should never be praised for “loving your character more” because this is harmful to readers) Create real chemistry by giving your characters qualities that would actually foster a connection Avoid “insta-love” by giving your characters time to bond and get to know each other Look out for serious romance cliches and overused plot lines like love triangles, forbidden romances (these can be great if done uniquely! ), and crazy exes Continuously up the stakes whenever the reader gets comfortable with the relationship

Horror and Thriller Writing Prompts

Because being terrified is entertaining to some people, horror and thriller books exist and are quite popular!

The great thing about this genre is that you can get really creative and really dark .

Acknowledgement Page, Copyright Page, & More!

25-page Fiction Book Outline Template

Ready to write? Get the parts of your story RIGHT and finish your book FASTER by downloading this FREE template that’s pre-formatted, easy to use, and you can fill-in-the-blank!

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Here are 30 horror and thriller writing prompts:

How to Write Horror and Thriller Genre Scaring people so much so that they sweat while simply reading is a difficult task. You really have to focus on the structure of your writing in order to create that reaction. Here are a few tips for writing horror and thriller genre : Building anticipation will be your #1 focus Readers need to feel surprised and scared so dig deep and get twisted Plot twists are a must; never let your characters or readers see what’s coming Continuously up the stakes Focus on building deep sympathy for your character from the very beginning. This will make the stakes seem even higher and increase tension, just as Stephen King does in his infamous novel,  IT,  pictured below.

Human curiosity is what makes this genre so incredibly popular. We always want to figure out what happened. Mystery books are natural page-turners because we just aren’t satisfied until we find out what happened.

But that can be difficult to create from nothing.

Here are 30 mystery writing prompts:

How to Write Mystery Mystery is a very difficult genre to write. You have to ensure that you don’t give away too much information so the readers don’t figure it out. These are some of our tips for writing a mystery novel: Make readers think they know what will happen by planting false foreshadowing along with real hints Make the antagonist very likable Juxtapose tense scenes with mellow ones to increase tension Keep the story moving forward always

Reddit is home to many different things—including writing prompts that you’d never find anywhere else.

Oftentimes, people go ahead and create threads expanding on writing prompts they read.

Here Are 15 of the Best Reddit Writing Prompts:

#1 – “You have a machine that tells you the effect of an action you are thinking about making, but you can only activate/use it once.”

#2 – “Well…you never asked.”

#3 – And to top it all off, they give you a medal for it.

#4 –  Every Christmas, Santa delivers gifts to the children who have been ‘nice’. But there’s a lesser-known brother Santa who every five years takes gifts away from children who have been ‘naughty’ even once. You just don’t know when…

#5 – You are casually walking down a deserted road when you fall into an open manhole.

#6 – You weren’t sure which was real.

#7 – People thought society would be better if we killed the worst 1% every year. Today is the hundredth anniversary, and the notion of the “worst” is getting really tricky.

Inspiration For A Dystopian Story

#8 – Absolutely everything that makes you uncomfortable is beneficial for you. Weakened viruses train your immune system, small muscle tears make you stronger…and small bullets make you more resistant to larger bullets. Turns out, the government is awfully interested in your unusual ability.

#9 – Before you, the villain holds your sidekick and love interest over a cliff, taunting you to choose one to save. You take one (1) second to think about it. You then shoot them both, to the shock and horror of your archenemisis.

#10 – You’re a man/woman happily married with kids but in severe financial difficulty. A genie gives you the chance to irreversibly rewind time back to the date of your tenth birthday and you accept, hoping to make your current life better with the knowledge you have…

Prompt For Writing A Genie Story Taken From Reddit

#11 – Every time you die, you are reincarnated into a new body. Unfortunately, the first few times, you failed to act as a normal child after being reborn. You are now a known factor for world powers, crazy nutjobs, major religions, and people who would give anything for the immortality you possess.

#12 – You have a name in your contacts that isn’t in any language you know, you delete it but the next day the number appears again. And that’s when life becomes a little weirder.

#13 –  You get to heaven only to find that the judgement is entirely based on how many promises you’ve broken.

#14 – Before you became apprentice, nobody told you learning a new spell is the easiest part of your studies. The real challenge is learning to survive the diverse and alien consequences of casting a spell.

#15 –  A war-thirsty species is finally defeated after rampaging through the galaxy for decades, and their remains are exiled to a far away and dangerous planet. Everyone panics when, millennia later, Humanity comes out of that planet asking where is everybody.

A Prompt To Help Write A Sci-Fi War Story Taken From Reddit

Non-Fiction Writing Prompts

I bet I know you.

You’re the type of person who has dreamed of writing a book for however many years, only held back by the lack of ideas – or good ideas, rather.

Or maybe you’re the type who has tons of ideas but aren’t sure if they’re worth pursuing .

It’s hard. I get it. A book is a big commitment and one you might actually want to go through with. But without having a clear idea of what to write about , that dream can seem too far out of reach.

But I’m telling you, it’s not.

In fact, using writing prompts can help you free your mind from its current constraints so you can explore ideas you might not have otherwise thought of yourself – in addition to a number of other benefits.

It’s one thing to use a writing prompt, it’s another to ensure that idea is actually a good one.

If you’re writing a nonfiction book , we have great ideas for you to focus on.

While reading these, note which ones cause you to pause and think – if only for a moment longer than the rest.

Those are the ideas to ponder and create a mind map for.

Here are a few writing prompts for a number of different broader categories that have proven to be prosperous.

Writing Prompts about Morals and Values

This is one of the top book ideas right now. Writing about your personal beliefs, how you came to them, and how they steer your life is something almost everyone can relate to.

And in a time where morality is being questioned time and time again by the media, it’s the best time to write on this topic.

Here are 25 Writing Prompts about Morals and Values :

Tips for Expanding on these Morals and Values: Be honest but don’t force your ideas on someone else Use research and facts to back up your statements Give real-life accounts of your experiences Avoid adopting a “know-it-all” voice

Writing Prompts about Health and Wellness

This is another book topic that has seen a rise in sales and engagement over the past few years. Society is starting to focus on health and well-being more so than many other important life ventures and now is the time to write about it!

Here are 25 Health and Wellness Writing Prompts:

Tips for Expanding on Health and Wellness Writing Prompts: Always use facts and research with something as sensitive as health Talk about what has worked for you personally and why Feature advice from experts in the field Include actionable steps others can learn from

Writing Prompts about Love and Relationships

This can be a tricky topic to write about because love is different for everyone.

Each relationship has different needs and trying to tell someone what their relationship needs can often cause issues if it’s not actually what their specific relationship can benefit from.

That being said, keeping your message broad enough to impact a lot of people while also hitting specific key points can make it easier.

Here are 25 Relationships and Love Writing Prompts:

Tips for Expanding on Relationship and Love Writing Prompts: Never assume every single person loves and wants love the same way Tell personal, real-life stories to build relatability Keep your advice open-ended and always encourage communication

Writing Prompts about Childhood and Family

We all had a childhood and we all have a family – even if we’ve decided to adopt friends to be a part of our family.

That means everyone can relate to being a child and having a family.

That being said, it’s hard to decide on which direction you can take when writing about your childhood or family.

Here are 25 Writing Prompts About Childhood and Family :

Tips for Expanding on Childhood and Family Writing Prompts: Family can be a sensitive subject so avoid hard “facts” about “all” families Make sure to include details about differences Tell stories others can easily relate to at the beginning

Writing Prompts about Happiness

Happiness is very subjective. We all have very different ideas about what true happiness is and how it comes about.

What you have to remember, though, is that everybody wants to be happy .

Here are 26 Writing Prompts about Happiness:

Tips for expanding on these writing prompts: Remember that your happiness is not what makes everyone else happy Focus on helping others find what makes them happy Talk about times you were unhappy frequently to drive the point home

Writing Prompts about Self-Esteem and Confidence

No matter who you are, you’ll experience moments of self-doubt and a lack of confidence.

Yes, even Beyonce has felt down about herself occasionally (though probably not often!).

The point is, writing about a lack of self-esteem and how to gain it is something everyone has experienced and therefore, everyone can relate to.

Here are 25 writing Prompts about Confidence :

Tips for Expanding on these Writing Prompts: Be honest, real, and raw when writing about your experiences Offer different solutions even if they didn’t work for you personally Interview a psychology expert in order to further the book’s credibility

Faith-Based Writing Prompts

Faith writing is a very personal journey for people. Whether you’ve been a lifelong believer or have recently stumbled into something that has changed your life, others have been there.

And they’ll want to read about it.

Here are 25 writing prompts about faith:

Tips for expanding on faith-based writing prompts: This is a great time to be open and specific about your beliefs Avoid shaming others in an attempt to get your message across Tell deeply personal stories so others can relate

Writing Prompts about Personal Journeys

Everyone has a personal journey. No matter what you’ve been through, there is a lesson hidden within it.

You can use these creative writing prompts to not only discover more about yourself, but perhaps light the way for others to see and understand as well.

Here are 25 writing prompts about personal journey:

Tips for expanding on personal journey writing prompts: Don’t censor yourself Talk to a therapist or psychologist to better understand your own journey Bring your real-life experiences into play

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Fiction Prompts - Ideas for Stories

Three elements.

Choose a set of three elements, and imagine a story that includes all three of them.

Character Ideas

Here are 3 ideas you can use to create fictional characters and stories:

Now, YOU complete the sentences to get even more character ideas:

realistic fiction essay topics

First Lines

Here are some beginnings for stories or poems. Start with one of these and see where your imagination takes you.

Twist Endings

Here are some twist endings you can use in your own fiction. See what story ideas they give you...

Creative Writing Recipes

Just follow these recipes, and see what comes out of your imagination.

SHORT STORY RECIPE Beginning of the story: Your character's mother wants your character to do something, and your character doesn't want to do it. They argue about it. Next part: The argument is interrupted by a surprising sight which startles both of them. Next: The surprising sight brings back a memory from your character's childhood involving his/her mother. Flash back to this memory. Next: Return to the present. Your character and his/her mother continue their conversation, but the tone of it is changed by the surprise and by your character's thoughts about the past.

POEM RECIPE Line 1: Give the reader an instruction. Line 2: Refer to a smell. Line 3: Use the word "ghostly". Line 4: Mention a childhood toy. Line 5: Quote a proverb or saying. Line 6: Refer to an animal. Line 7: Repeat a phrase from earlier in this poem. Line 8: Ask the reader a question.

Ideas for Stories - Next Steps

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You can find hundreds of ideas for stories on our website. Here are some links to start with:

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Realistic Fiction Story Ideas for the Writer in You

Do you love to express yourself through writing or love writing stories on fiction? This article covers the realistic fiction story ideas that could help you unleash your creativity. After all writing is a form of expression through unlimited imagination.

Realistic Fiction Story Ideas

Don’t know where to start? Relax, it happens to even the best of us. I was sure about the content that needed to be written in this article, but got confused as I started writing. Then I made a rough sketch of all that needs to be mentioned and my problem was solved. I still remember the famous quote by Mr. Stephen King that “Fiction is the truth inside the lie” .

Most of us often tend to stay away from writing fiction. Why? Is it because we have no idea of what needs to written? A human mind can never run out of ideas. Take the example of a painter or a sculptor, their creation is based on mere imagination and creativity. It’s the same while writing, you need to invent something in your own mind.

So what had inspired the famous and successful writers to come up with such vague ideas? The author of the famous Harry Potter series- J. K Rowling wrote way beyond one’s imagination. The same goes for movies or novels based on fiction, like science fictions, vampire movies, fairy tales, disaster movies, monster stories, supernatural stories, superhero movies, comic strips, etc.

Fiction writing is not difficult, you just need to find ways of getting new and different short story ideas. Wondering what makes it realistic? Realistic fiction is basically just showing real characters dealing with real problems, which may not be true at all times and could take place in the present as well as the future. It may also be portrayed by people that have really lived like those characters; for example in My Sister’s Keeper or The Twilight Series.

Sometimes you may add extra characters in a story, like it was done in the movie Titanic. The lead actors of the film were just imaginary and were not present during the sinking of the RMS Titanic in 1912. It is very important to conceptualize the entire plot along-with creative character outlines in a story.

Story Ideas


Referring to books, novels, comics is the best way of drawing inspiration and getting story ideas. You may learn different styles of writing a particular story or get to know the techniques used in writing a particular type. You may draw inspiration from a famous author since they are masters in their field, and you will get some amazing ideas.

Real Life Incidents

We always come across many real life stories, learn to get ideas from them. It could be about a simple boy, a brutal murder, an accident, or a gang war. It may be about anything and everything taking place in the present or something that has taken place in the past. The best way of getting to know of such ideas is through news channels, History channels, or newspapers and magazines.

Photographs/ Drawings/ Paintings

Have you ever come across a painting and paused just to think that a fiction story can be developed? Bingo! Then you are absolutely on the right track. It is very rare that people think of penning down stories after coming across any drawing, painting or even old photographs.

This is indeed my favorite way of getting the most prolific and innovative fiction ideas to start a story. Almost every human being on earth dreams every night. You can interpret those dreams if possible, and may end up with the most amazing idea.

Your own life can be your biggest inspiration! Just look around yourself there is loads to write, right from your childhood, college crush, the annoying boss at work, your big and weird family, the girl or guy you hate the most, your aged neighbor, your pet, that slimy animal in the lawn, the accident you witnessed – there’s so much. So keep your eyes open and notice everything taking place in your life and pen it down.

Movies have always been the most common way of getting ideas of writing stories. It could be in the form of a remake of a certain movie, a prequel, a sequel or just a different story altogether. This helps when writing on a specific genre, like drawing ideas from movies based on monsters, you can either create a new story about a creature that has never been used before, it may be inspire you to create a short story idea for kids or a horror story meant only for adults.

Short Story Ideas With a Twist

Remember there is a big difference between drawing inspiration and plagiarizing someone’s hard work.

Elements of a Short Story

A title for the story can be decided before writing the story or at the end. It is advisable to do this at the end since you would have a wide option of words to choose from. Finding the perfect title is not a big task. Just remember it should fit the genre as well as the plot of the story. Avoid names that have been used by other authors and writers for their novel or movie.

Writing a plot is the main part of the story, while writing a fiction story you should keep in mind that there are many techniques involved. The plot may be written in a flashback, either in a linear or nonlinear way. The story has to consist of a conflict faced by the protagonist, then comes the part when the protagonist needs to resolve the problem with all the complications and hurdles involved. The story starts with a rising action then leads to a climax or anti-climax scene and ends with a falling action. While writing a plot learn to play with all the characters and the situations they are caught in, during the climax do not reveal the suspense early but keep the reader or viewer engrossed so that the story remains unpredictable till the end.

Wondering how to create a realistic fiction character? Characterization is very important while including characters in a story. The number of characters as well as their character traits like age, body language, personality, etc. need to be mentioned while writing a plot. The character can either be human, an animal, a creature, or an imaginary thing invented by you. The protagonist is the main character around whom the entire story revolves, apart from the protagonist there are other characters like the antagonist (negative character), minor characters (character supporting the protagonist) and the foil character (in contrast to the protagonist).

Setting of the story is nothing but the time and place of where the story is set. You need to describe the location, time of the day, the weather, the climate, and the background. This can be done by action, a dialog or through a person’s thoughts.

Point of View

The point of view is the narrative point of view and is the way a story is told. It can either be a first person point of view narrated by the protagonist or another character in the story and the term ‘I’ is used during narration. In the case of a third person’s point of view the story is narrated by a third person who is not a part of the plot.

Symbols are used to create a meaning in a fiction story, it is done by depicting images or objects during a particular situation. Some situations are not expressible and symbols need to be shown, thus for a strong fiction story it is essential to involve all the human senses. For example blood signifies the color red or the Ouija board signifies the supernatural.

Theme is something that motivates and leads the writer to write on a particular subject. Themes have a very strong base in most fiction stories. There are a few examples of themes like those shown in Ice Age (animals show a sense of belonging), King Kong or Beauty and the Beast (beasts also have strong emotions) and Shrek (unconditional and true love), etc.

Start writing some really good stories on fiction and remember to use only a maximum of six sentences in each paragraph and introduce new words and refrain form using the word ‘said’ every-time. Instead use words like called, informed, cried, reminded, screamed etc. to express the feelings of a particular character. It would take you one week or a year to complete a fiction story, depending on the plot you select and the time you decide to dedicate to it.

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