Story Development Prompt:
Pick a scene in your novel. Write it from the point of view of a generic, unnamed background character.
Pick a scene in your novel. Write it from a different character’s point of view.
Find a dialogue-heavy scene of your story. Rewrite it as if it were an overly dramatic soap opera.
Find a romantic scene of your story. Rewrite it as if it were a steamy, bodice-ripping romance.
Think about your unfinished novel’s plot going forward. Fastwrite as many crazy “What if” statements as you can think of in a minute.
Write a 1-page scene with BAD dialogue. Make it the WORST dialogue in the history of the world! When you’re done, rewrite the same scene with good dialogue instead.
Pick a setting in your novel. Make a list of sensory details your character might experience at that setting. Write at least two for each of the 5 senses (see, hear, taste, touch, smell).
What is the WORST possible thing that could happen right now in your story?
Think about a climactic moment in your story when your hero just barely wins. Write about what would happen if they lost instead.
Rewrite a scene in 1st person instead of 3rd, or 3rd person instead of 1st.
Write a short story that is EXACTLY 500 words. Only 200 of those words can be three letters or less. It’s hard, but this is an extremely powerful exercise in line editing and being very intentional in your writing!
Character Development Prompt:
Your character just won the lottery. What do they do? What do they buy?
It is the last page of your character’s story. What would they tell the first-page version of themselves if they had a chance?
Write an apology letter to the character you hurt the most.
Write a letter from your main character to an unbiased “pen pal.” Have them talk about what’s going on, justify what they’re doing, etc.
Complete this sentence for your character: “The most terrifying thing in the world is…”
Complete this sentence for your character: “The most important thing in the world is…”
Complete this sentence for your character: “I was put here on earth to…”
What are your character’s strongest talents? What unique skill sets do they possess?
Why is your main character the main character? What do they add to the story that no one else can?
Story Starter Prompt:
Your character’s long-dead grandma appears out of the blue. She says your character is from an alien race that’s about to invade Earth, and they must return to the home planet for safety.
Your character’s future child appears, fully grown. The child says he went back in time in order to change the future, with your character’s help.
Your character follows a strange man into a back alley, hoping to buy drugs. But instead, he simply hands your character a gilded four leaf clover (or other strange trinket/random object).
Take your main character and place them into your current day job. How does the office respond? Does your character do a good job filling your place?
What does your character’s handwriting look like? Is there any significance to it?
Write about the day your character met their best friend.
Your character is driving by rental car when they hear the thump of a flat tire. After pulling over, they realize the thump wasn’t from a flat. It’s coming from the trunk.
Go to your bookshelf, close your eyes, and pick up the first book you touch. Open it to a random page and read the first full sentence. Write a scene that includes that sentence.
Your character is absent-mindedly singing to himself, when suddenly the topic of the song comes true.
For all the ugly things they had done, their entwined hands looked beautiful together.
The night sky lit up for a second and what followed sounded a lot like the end of the world.
“Last night I tried to imagine myself without you. The thing is, I could and I felt so much better.”
It was strange to touch him without one of them dying.
Some said the world would end in fire, some said in ice. Some people even said with zombies. But no one could have known that this was how it all ended.
“So that’s it? It’s over?”
“In my defense, he was already dead when I got here.”
“Can I just whoop your ass now?”
“You have no idea who I am, do you?”
“How was I supposed to know it was haunted?”
“I’m still way too sober for this.”
“The more I love you, the more I hate you.”
“I can’t believe I’d ever fall in love with someone like you.”
“It’s things like these that keep me up at night.”
“You can’t get rid of me that easily.”
“We are all queens of our own kingdoms.”
“You’re the worst thing that’s ever happened to me, and yet I don’t regret a moment of it.”
“But if they think we’re a couple, we’ll get the couples discount!”
“I can be sweet. Sometimes. To certain people. It happens!”
“Normally, I’d have pushed you out the door by now, but you’re making a compelling argument with the bribery.”
“I have fifty other excuses I could use. Do you want me to start alphabetically?”
“Wow, fantastic. Now we can add stranded on top of our other numerous problems.”
“Are you always this prone to bad luck and violence? If so, that’s kind of sad.”
“I’m not going anywhere until you tell me why I saw you float through a wall.”
“I am not grossly romantic. I am the right amount of romantic I’m required to be.”
“What I lack in height, I make up for with my attitude.”
“Rules? Nope, not listening. I’m not following them. Never have, never will.”
“Not much of this makes sense. The markings are faded and I think some are missing.”
“This whole ‘magic’ thing is going too far. There’s no way I’m able to do any of the things you’ve talked about and I think I would have noticed by now if I could.”
“No pressure, honest. It’s not like the world is depending on you or anything.”
“Wow. Here I thought we had a moment. I spilled my story to you and all you have to say is ‘okay’? What does that even mean?!”
“I don’t think this is the biggest mistake you’ve made. It’s probably like…the third worst.”
“Our new neighbors are simultaneously the scariest and nicest people I’ve met.”
“You’re so convinced that I’ll hurt them that you haven’t considered it’s the last thing I’d ever want to do.”
“What I don’t want is any more experiments done in parts of my house. I found an ominous purple stain in my carpet yesterday and I know it was your fault.”
“What have I told you about listening to your gut more? It’s smart. Do it.”
“Aw, look at you, using fancy words at me. You’ve certainly grown up, haven’t you?”
“Would you believe me if I said what you saw was a trick of the light?”
“Shouting at each other across the room doesn’t count as having a proper conversation about your feelings. Wouldn’t you rather all of this be private, anyway?” (
“Didn’t we agree that you should keep your magic out of my house? Everything I own suffers when you try a new spell.”
“I’m not letting karma deal with this. I can’t trust it’ll be enough of a punishment, nor can I say it’d be fast enough.”
“You’d think I’d be embarrassed, but let’s be real with each other. I’ve done far worse things.”
“Knowing what you know now, if you could go back. Would you do it? Kill xir before xe can ever do these things?”
Xe gives xirself out to everyone, bits and pieces of xir love and time and soul. Xe’s falling apart from self-made wounds, digging deep to give out more and more and more for people that don’t deserve it.
“There are fewer fortune-tellers than you may think,” says the witch. “I mean, tarot, sure. Predictions and unclear oracles of maybes. But actual knowing? Nah, man, you can only do that if the Fates have blinded themselves to you.”
“I want you to know how much I enjoy this. The taste of your blood, the smell of your fear. I could’ve let you go. But I’m doing this because I want to. There is no mercy here.”
“Are you angry? I did not intend to hurt you, this I swear. I did not know how to not. But ignorance of the good doesn’t excuse the bad. I’m sorry.”
“Xe lives off life energy, dumbass. It’s not like food- I know we compare it to a hunger a lot, but xir body literally cannot make itself live. Every moment that xe is not feeding, xe is dying. Do you think you could maybe ease off a little bit? It’s tough. I know xe’s not what you wanted, not the person you remembered but we’re doing our best.”
“Bruh, I don’t know where you got the idea that I’m a good person, but if you want to keep it. Leave now.”
“You’ve dragged me into this hellhole, but you can’t make me leave!”
“So I think we’ve all accepted that I’m going to die at this point, but since you’re a historian can you at least make my death really cool?”
“There’s something really funny about watching [villain] eat peanut butter with a spoon. During a battle. Because I can’t touch xir. Did I say funny? I meant infuriating.”
“We’ll become legends. One way or another.”
“Am I a hero or the devil’s son? Can’t figure out what side I’m on.”
“So from the bottom of my cold, dead heart, screw you.”
“I’ve been the family disappointment for years! You can’t just suddenly show up at dinner and steal my rightful title!”
Superhero AU: Your character’s superpower never manifested.
Superhero AU: Your character just found out that their best friend is destined to be the next Villain.
Pirate/Mermaid AU: Your character is a merciless pirate, and she just wrangled her best prey yet. A mermaid.
Soulmate AU: Your character can see her soulmate in her bedroom mirror every night. They’ve never met in real life.
Soulmate AU: There’s a timer tattoo on your character’s wrist that counts down to the moment she’ll meet her soulmate.
Soulmate AU: A red thread of fate connects your character to his soulmate. The threat cannot be broken, but it can stretch and tangle.
Soulmate AU: When your character goes to sleep, in his dreams he can see the world through his soulmate’s eyes.
AU: Your main cast is a team of reality TV ghost hunters. This time, the house is actually haunted.
Fake Dating AU: Your character couldn’t stand the family gathering ‘you’re still single?’ ridicule, so she threw out the name of her crush… who happens to be a family friend, and it present at the gathering.
Assassin AU: After stalking her prey and tracking his movements for so long, your character has begun to fall in love with him.
Assassin AU: Your character and his love interest are hired to kill each other.
Assassin/Fake Dating AU: After being undercover as the target’s ‘girlfriend’ for several months, your character is ordered to finish the job.
Superhero AU: Your character is an undercover superhero. Their love interest is an undercover supervillain. The two know each other in real life, but DON’T know about each other’s secret identities.
Masquerade Ball AU: Your main romantic couple meets at a masquerade ball, and can’t recognize each other.
Imagine your OTP where Person A doesn’t have a birthday so Person B says they are allowed to choose the date. And they choose a day that they associate with Person B.