Tips For Novel Ideas

Novel ideas for writing a plot or creating fiction is easier than you believe. Sometimes it's as easy as looking around oneself to find that great idea. Here are some tips for novel ideas...

There are so many ways to come up with ideas for writing a plot or creating fiction. Sometimes it's as easy as looking around oneself to find that great idea. Here are some tips for novel ideas...

The six ?'s of story telling

Questions always lead to something. Whether it is the right answer, or a new idea or thought, questions can become a pathway to new story ideas. These are the basic six questions you want to ask yourself when coming up with a new story line. But don't stop here. The key is to ask yourself detailed questions about your story line and leave no stone unturned. The five "˜W's' and the "˜how' questions have always been a good guidance tool for this. Never forget these questions when writing:







Stretch your mind by reading

In a time where the television has taken control of most of our homes, we need to break out and re-discover words. Sure we can get ideas from watching television but it doesn't work our minds like reading does. Reading both fiction (novels) and non-fiction (newspapers, magazines, etc.) will help keep you updated on what's happening in the world and it will increase your memory bank.

Depending on what genre you are interested in, be sure to read other writers from that genre. If you like romance, read romance. If you like westerns, then read westerns. Non-fiction, read biographies or self-help books, or whatever else you like. Get to know that genre and what the publishing industry is offering readers.

You can even dig deeper when reading a fiction novel. Watch for a theme. All fiction books have themes such as "˜love triumphs all' or "˜good guys finish first', etc.

Be a watcher - of people and places

This world is a busy place. The goings-on around us can supply us with endless plots and scenes"¦if we are paying attention.

Observation is a key tool to discovering how the world works. As an observer, try a few different ways to discover new ideas for your writing.

Imagine the scene as if you were experiencing it or seeing it for the first time

Imagine the scene as you are now

Imagine the scene as if you knew you were going to die soon

Imagine the scene as if you were seeing it for the last time because it won't happen again in your lifetime

By doing this you will give yourself a broader writing point-of-view. You will open up the doors to great storytelling and your characters will become much more realistic and reliable to your readers. You will also find that your readers will connect better with them.

People are constantly fascinating me. The way they act, speak, watch, look, dress, walk, etc. I could sit in one spot and watch people pass by for hours. There are so many places to "˜people watch' such as: the airport, shopping malls, buses or any other transport system, when you're stuck in traffic, in a dentist or doctor's office, etc. Don't just watch, but discover how the people react to what's happening to them and around them.

Ask yourself questions about why they do what they do? Why do they look happy or sad? Are they on vacation? Where are they from? Why are they here? There are so many questions, and it's these questions that can lead you to new story ideas. Let them flow and write down your answers.

People watching can stretch the borders of our imagination. Wherever you go, always bring paper and a pen with you. You never know what will happen. You might just see something that will spark your imagination and set you on a new journey of storytelling.


Sounds are important to describe in any story. They give more shape and substance to your scenes. Your readers become more entranced when they are given more information.

Reading should be like living for your reader. It should be a world that contains all the senses. Touch, taste, smell, sound - these are all key to making your story come alive for your reader. Listen to the sounds around you, wherever you are. Take a moment to close your eyes and listen to what is happening instead of just watching.

Write down the sounds you hear around you and give a detailed account of each of them. Good listening skills can and will increase your ability to write great stories. By listening, you become more aware and prepared to provide details of the sounds you need to make your story credible.

Dream and Fantasies

Dreams can often provide you with incredible stories because there seems to be such a freedom of the mind when we dream. It's been said, "˜dreams are a window into our very soul'. If this is true, then writing from our dreams could be a great way to write from our hearts, and in that, find out what we're passionate about. I always keep a notebook and pen beside my bed. If I dream something that I think I can use in a story, I always jot it down for future reference.

Fantasies provide us with another great way to glean new story ideas. We all fantasize at some point in our lives. It can happen in school, in a meeting, on an elevator, etc. This is another great way to open up and stretch your imagination for new stories. Take time to sit and allow your mind to take you wherever it wants to go. It's amazing what ideas for story lines and scenes come to light during this time.


Journaling is a great tool for writers. It's a place where we can write down all our secrets, thoughts, ideas, scenes that suddenly come to mind, sounds or smell or sights that we don't want to forget and anything else that pops in our heads. Journals, in a way, can become a friend to us, or a confidant that we share with. For some, it is our chance to open up ourselves and become extremely vulnerable. This is a tool that writers can use to stretch and improve their writing skills.

I hope all these tools send you on your way to great story telling!

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