Book: Fantasy Writing Prompts - 77 Powerful Ideas To Inspire Your Fiction (Writer's Craft Book 24) by Rayne Hallcategories: Book, Writing Paranormal Fiction, Novel Writing, Writing Reference, Writer's Craft, Writing Prompts, Writing Inspiration, Plot Ideas, Writing Exercises, Creative Writing Prompts, Speculative Fiction Writing, Specfic Writing, Fantasy Fiction Writing
Rayne Hallabout this book: FANTASY WRITING PROMPTS: SEVENTY-SEVEN POWERFUL IDEAS TO INSPIRE YOUR FICTION
This book is part of Rayne Hall's acclaimed Writer's Craft series.
Here's an excerpt:
This book is crammed with fertile seeds for fantasy fiction. Each prompt comes with a wealth of suggestions how you can develop it to suit the kind of story you want to write. Plant those seeds into the rich ground of your own imagination, and watch them grow.
All you need is a timer (such as a stopwatch, kitchen timer or computer app), and a keyboard or pen. Many writers find that their creativity flows best when they write by hand, but the choice is yours.
Step 1: Set the timer to 10 minutes. Pick a prompt at random, and jot down whatever ideas it suggests. Without evaluating the ideas or censoring your thoughts, just keep the pen moving on the paper or the fingers dancing on the keyboard. This process is called 'freewriting'. Whenever your thoughts dry up, write "What if..?", a question that jump-starts writers' imaginations. When the ten minutes are up, take a brief break.
Step 2: Read what you've written, and underline or highlight any phrases that excite you or pique your interest. Set the timer to 20 minutes. Now freewrite about the underlined phrases. Let your imagination interpret them. Your thought journey may circle around the original prompt, or lead in new directions - either is fine. You can also ask yourself: How might this fit into a short story? How might this expand into a novel? How would this scenario play out in the fantasy world I've created? What would my series characters think about this situation, and how would they respond? How could this be even worse? What excites me about this prompt? What experience does this remind me of? How does this relate to my job, my ambitions, my dilemmas, my childhood, my relationships, people I used to know? Which aspects arouse my emotions, and why? And of course, that Open-Sesame question: What if...?
I suggest freewriting about several prompts - perhaps one every day - before you decide which idea to develop into a work of fiction. One of them may visit you in your dreams at night, or make your body tingle all over whenever you think of it. That's the one to chose. Start building a plot for it. Save the others so you can use them for future projects.
When reading the prompts, or when jotting down your spontaneous thoughts during Step 1, you may remember having read a story that deals with a similar topic, or wonder what happens if many writers use the same prompt. Don't worry about this. There are few completely new ideas in speculative fiction. I doubt any book exists that doesn't include some previously-used components.
Indeed, many great works of fantasy fiction have their roots in fairy tales and myths dating back centuries or millennia.
The key is to plant the idea seed into the fertile soil of your own imagination. What makes the story unique is the way you interpret the prompt, the context you place it in, and your individual author voice.
This method works well for getting creative juices flowing, for breaking through creative blocks, and for starting a new project.
The prompts in this collection work for all kinds of Fantasy novels - epic, dark, urban, humorous. If you interpret the prompts freely, you can also apply them to related genres like Paranormal Romance, Steampunk, Supernatural Horror and Science Fiction.
If you're in a middle of a novel, this collection is less suitable. You may find my book Mid-Novel Writing Prompts (Writer's Craft #23) more helpful.
I'm writing in British English, with British spelling, grammar and punctuation. I've used the gender pronouns randomly, switching between 'she' and 'he'. Some of the prompts in this book overlap with suggestions I've offered in Writing About Magic (Writer's Craft #3).
Now let's get started. Do you have the timer set and the pen at hand? Ready... go!
FANTASY WRITING PROMPT #1
A member of the community can absorb other people's pain, so they no longer feel it, but he suffers it in their place.
Ideas you can use:
What kind of pain does he absorb - physical (e.g. toothache, gallstones) or emotional (e.g. grief, heartache)?
Does he seek out people whom to help, or do they turn to him?
Does he do this voluntarily, or is he forced? Does he get paid? Is it a freelance business?
What do people call his kind - pain-eater, ease-bringer, the pale one?
His his kind respected or detested in the community?
Can anyone use his services, or only a specific group, e.g. only the royal family, members of a specific religion, those with special insurance, or the very rich?
Is he the only one with this ability? Are there others in the community or elsewhere in the world?
How did he get the role? Was he born with the natural talent? If so, how was this discovered? Is it a genetic inheritance? Does it get passed down according to a pattern (e.g. always to the third son of a pain-eater) or randomly? Are candidates selected by a secret committee that bestows the ability in a magic ritual? Does the candidate have the option to refuse?
Is there a limit to how much pain he can absorb?
Can he rid himself of pain? If yes, what must he do?
What happens if he refuses to absorb someone's pain? What might cause him to refuse? Perhaps he thinks the person brought the pain on themselves and should suffer the consequences, or he feels the pain is just punishment for their evil deeds, or maybe he simply can't cope with any more pain he already suffers.
If he dies, what happens to the pain he has stored? Does it return to the original host?
What happens if he can't bear the pain any longer? Does he jump off a cliff, get executed for uselessness, or go insane?
FANTASY WRITING PROMPT #2
An artist can move objects by painting them in a new location.
Ideas you can use:
Is she the only artist who can do this? Can all artists? Or only those with specific training?
What does she use this gift for? Does she steal items she wants by painting them against the backdrop of her home? Does she take food from the rich and give it to the poor?
Might she use it to hide incriminating objects or to plant false evidence?
Could she drive someone insane, or make him believe in his own insanity so he voluntarily commits himself to the lunatic asylum?
Is the artist's ability known, or does she keep it secret? What would happen to her if found out?
Is this a natural gift, a skill she acquired through intense study, or magic spell another artist revealed to her on his death bed?
Does apply the skill for her own benefit, or can people hire her services? Is she in the employ of the queen, a ruthless businessman, a presidential candidate or a crime lord?
How do those who are aware of her ability feel about it? Do they seek to take advantage, or do they urge her to give it up?
What if she has strong ethical principles, and the ability to enrich herself by undiscoverable theft is a constant temptation?
What if others force her to use the ability against her will? Maybe they threaten to execute her lover or her children if she doesn't comply. How far will she go to to stop evil from using her? Will she cut off her own hand so she can never hold a brush again?
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