12

Every writer has their own way. In a very general sense you either write as a discovery or write with a plan. It seems like you have a good idea. Write it. Since you haven't discovered your next step as you wrote the idea, you're now stuck. If you still want to try and discover your story but you're stuck at the end of Chapter 1 with no idea where to go ...


11

You have an inciting incident and a protagonist. I think something is off about one of them. Your protagonist is under-developed, or your inciting incident is under-developed. In a typical story, this inciting incident forces upon the protagonist their central dilemma / opportunity, and addressing this dilemma / opportunity is what the story is about. The ...


9

The best way to explore the implications of any idea is to write about it. Write an origin story for your technology; then write about its first presentation to the public and the resulting upheaval. Do a character study of someone who hates the new technology, then another about the innovator who takes the basic idea but applied it in new ways which ...


8

The method I'm familiar with is a writing bible - a document where you're constantly recording any new information you add to the world; any new detail you want to be committed to throughout the book. At its simplest, this is literally jotting down any new concrete detail you add. If your write `"Jurgen's eldest brother Bob was the snootiest accountant he'd ...


8

A story is about one or more characters. These need not be human, and they need not necessarily even be living beings (a story about an AI's struggle for equality could make an interesting sci-fi story as well as an allegory to our world past and present...), but they should be something that the reader can identify with. Characters inhabit a world. The ...


7

There's definitely an interesting story in a rapist's repentance. Two things I would caution you against, though, are making it seem as though the victim "ought" to forgive the rapist to the point of starting a relationship (you're going to have trouble explaining why she would want to do something like this, besides Stockholm Syndrome), and making it seem ...


5

I've had the same problem, I have overwhelmingly too many ideas and sometimes it can become paralyzing. I tried lots of tools for organizing and keeping my ideas and most of them weren't just 'good enough'. The best tool (method) that I found was what @Lynn Beighley mentioned (mind mapping). Mind mapping is great and there are lots of applications available (...


5

Do not say "written boldly", everybody knows what a "football shirt" looks like. A "football shirt" is a "jersey", the reader will know it is a football jersey by any single mention of football. Aiden watched the boy with jersey number 10 running on the football field. +1 Morgan. To expand, if you want something better than the neutral "watched", try "...


5

What you need is inspiration - try throwing a coin The problem is that you only have the start - but not the end. Without knowing where you want to go it will be hard to flesh out the middle part where most things happen. One option would be to get a feeling for what your idea for the story is like and then go and read stuff that feels similar. For ...


5

Give Scrivener a try. It’s designed for long-form writing, such as novels, screenplays and dissertations. Each Scrivener file contains multiple documents: the stuff you write and other files you add (like PDFs or JPEGs) for research material. The Scrivener file uses a hierarchal structure and to organise material stored in it - both folders and files can ...


4

Far be it from me to let my fans down... ;) There is no one standard way. I have found that my old friend Scrivener is great for this. You start by gathering your information about your world (characters, settings/places, plot events, world-building notes) on Scrivener pages. Just infodump. Then you create folders. Everything about your characters goes ...


4

If you want to learn about plotting fairy-tale stories I recommend you to read "Morphology of the Folktale" by Vladimir Propp. It is a study that dissect the different elements of the folk tales from examples and present a common structure composed by 31 "functions". It is easy to structure your tale after that schema. You can have a bit of it by reading ...


4

I have worked as a police inspector for some time and I can tell that there is no normal crime. When you start exploring the motives and the criminal's psychology it becomes very interesting. I'd suggest that you try learning as much as you can about the specific crime because the most important things are in the details. I think what will make an ...


4

A crime written in the newspaper is largely boring. Someone stole something, killed someone, the more interesting parts of the crime are hardly written in public papers. If you want to write good crime story, make it irregular, give it something new. How is the body found? In one of Kathy Reichs books she's part of a team investigating on an airplane ...


4

To what the others have said, I will add the following: Your new technology must have its limitations. There must be times, places, circumstances and/or purposes in which this technology cannot be used. These limitations will eventually become known to the characters. Unless the "what if" of your story is the discovery of a way around the Really Big ...


4

The British science-fiction Bob Shaw described this process in relation to his concept of slow glass. He devised the idea of a form of glass where light passed it extremely slowly and went on to write several short stories and a novel based on slow glass. However, it took him nearly two years before he wrote the first short story. He said he considers a ...


4

Often, it is not the questions about a potential story idea that we ask ourselves to invoke inspiration; it's the questions about life we ask ourselves that tend to want us to create an answer. What if this murder was being solved by this type of person, in this environment? What would happen if I put this in space, but instead of the void, space was ruled ...


4

To get an end from a beginning, ask three questions: 1) What changes? 2) What stays the same? 3) What changes, and then changes back? In Hunger Games, Katniss and Peeta's relationship changes, so does her perspective on the world, so does the Hunger Games themselves, and so forth. Her commitment to her family, and pragmatic, resourceful outlook stay ...


4

I don't think they make sense together, if the queen has no political power, she is just a pretty prop or puppet that has to do as the men decide. You say she does not rule "directly", that is incorrect. She does not rule at all, she can make no decisions, she is just a lucky heiress. I think these concepts work against each other; long ago the men would ...


4

I don't think the specifics matter that much, what you are looking for is dividing lines that can create conflict. In your example, say you decide the son doesn't want to work with his father. That alone creates a conflict, a potential rift between father and son. As for the rest of your questions, I would avoid "what if" questions per se, you need to ...


4

Being hit by a truck would be a plausible cause for those injuries Now this is a morbid question. I really hope you're not asking us to provide you with an alibi to tell to the police... ( ͡° ͜ʖ ͡°) She is wandering on a highway at night ("It has to look almost suicidal"). Why? Some kids do this kind of stuff for dares. Maybe she was drunk, or had been ...


3

To gain mainstream readership you need something that people can connect to, that they can understand the emotional journey that you are taking them on. I can certainly see the appeal of writing a book based on the rapists' point of view. It would perhaps be interesting to see how he got to the point of becoming a rapist. Taking a generic character through ...


3

As I mentioned in my comment above, the Aarne-Thompson classification, specifically the section on fairy-tales, may be useful to you. A handy summary can be found on Wikipedia. It classifies stories by theme and gives common examples which are likely to be familiar to you. It also lists lots of fairy-tales that have become forgotten in recent years, which ...


3

It is time for the dreaded lists. Lists are a valuable tool in building a complicated project. Specifically I would make lists of unresolved plot points already in the narrative, plot points to be put in the narrative, order of events, and minor characters. The minor characters does not directly help your situation, but I find it very helpful (assuming you ...


3

You identify two problems in your question. One is "how can I effectively develop topics out of thin air without research, or spending hours before actually writing?" This is a "what to write about" question, which is not on-topic for Writers. (Plus, there's no such thing as "developing topics without research." You may have done the "research" by reading ...


3

I've found the best solution to improving creative productivity is to practice self-discipline. Discipline is also a skill, so it will take time to find a routine that works for you. Find an hour or so in which you believe you're the most productive and set it aside exclusively for writing, eliminate any distractions or commitments. Every day, go to your '...


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