Instead of sitting, thinking and wondering how to find ideas for creative writing, the best course of action to take is to do some work which will allow you not to only recognize the ideas you already have but to build them into potential stories.
This may sound easier said than done. However, there is an easy way to do it. First you will need a few stationery items, nothing fancy, a ring binder file, some dividers and plenty of A4 sheets. You are simply going to create your own creative writing idea file.
CREATIVE WRITING IDEA FILE
You will start by producing categories for your ideas for creative writing file. This will change and develop over time, as will you (in a good way) – if you write regularly.
But for now, the first step in learning how to find ideas for creative writing is to create some characters. Don’t forget characters can be human, animal, creatures from outer space or even a species you created. This is the fun bit – it’s all in your own head.
You will soon find your own favourite method of finding characters but to get you started you could try this:
You could start by describing people you know, or people you admired or hated from afar.
Begin to change every single thing about them, their appearance, their personality, their attitudes – everything to the opposite.
When you have created at least ten characters stop and move on to the next category….
These are called inciting incidents because they must incite your character to divert from their path. These incidents change your characters life, provide the starting point for their story and introduce the main conflict.In other words, inciting incidents are events that begin to change your character’s life – for the worse!
HOW TO FIND YOUR CHARACTER’S INCITING INCIDENT
Think again about what each of your characters wants from life. Write down the incident that will either threaten to take it from them, or an incident that does.
For example, your character wants to climb a mountain but an accident makes climbing impossible, or they are imprisoned, or they lose confidence – remember to put yourself in your character’s shoes as you think.
EXPAND YOUR IDEAS FOR CREATIVE WRITING
At this point you have drawn up ideas for several characters and you have expanded these ideas into inciting incidents.
These can be changed as you work. You may find that an inciting incident that originated with the character of ‘Fred’ goes better with the character of ‘Cheryl.’
It doesn’t matter how you mix things – what I want you to realize is how easy it was to grow a few simple ideas into a whole lot more.
As you will have seen, ideas expand as long you work on them. Most of this work involves asking yourself questions and answering them in your writing.
The more you do this the more ideas you will have. You can continue to build your file by creating more characters and inciting incidents. Have fun with this and let your imagination fly.
You can change and swap your characters and incidents around as much as you like and your file will eventually grow so big you will never again have to worry about finding new ideas for your creative writing.
You may like to try different methods so there are other ways to stimulate creative writing ideas here.
We are all very different and we may find some exercises better than others work better for you than others so you should also try your hand at the following:
I hope you enjoy the process and let me know how you get on in the comments box. I love to hear from other writers.
Bye for now.