Everyone gets stuck for an idea now and again. Fortunately there are many resources out there that can kick-start your brain. Here’s a few:
- Hourly Story Seeds is an interesting little twitter feed that provides a self-explanatory service. Every hour it provides a fragment or motif from folklore and mythology that can be developed into a story, or at least part of one.
- Future Timeline extrapolates the likely future humanity faces from what we know today. Lots of story seeds there.
- Arcana Wiki is all about interesting real-world things that can be used.
- Seventh Sanctum’s generators can have iffy results, but if you’re stuck, you could do a lot worse.
- I made my own generator some time ago to randomly come up with short story titles.
“But wait,” I can hear you asking. “These ideas aren’t mine. Aren’t I stealing them?”
Well, yes. That’s how inspiration works. We take something from an innocuous phrase, or a movie, or something we see on the bus, and we turn that into a story. Ideas cannot be copy-written. They are cheap. They are plentiful. They are worthless. What gives a writer merit is his ability to take an idea — any idea — and turn it into a marketable product. Into art. Into something.
That’s what a writer does, and that’s all a writer does. Turn worthless ideas into worthwhile stories. If you can do that, then you’re set.