Finding novel ideas

United States
May 23, 2007 2:02pm CST
Anyone know of any good places to find plot ideas for novels? Something that might help me push past the writer's block. Also, I have a huge problem coming up with character names. I found a generator at one point that you could choose the type of scenario you were looking for and get random names that would match. Some were alright, but most were just random letter than didn't make sense. I go to writing.com a lot, but I was wondering if you anyone knew of any other places.
2 people like this
4 responses
• India
24 May 07
Newspapers and magazines are a good source I think. Besides that tiny incidents that happen everyday can be woven into interesting scenes. But what do I know- I've never been published :(
1 person likes this
• United States
24 May 07
For some reason, I've always had a hard time sitting down and reading newspapers. Not entirely sure why either. But you're right, they do provide a great source of inspiration. In fact, newspapers and magazines would help me a lot in coming up with things to put on my editorial/opinion blog http://raredream.wordpress.com Thanks! Soon enough, we'll both get published if we just keep working on it. Good luck!!!
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@patgalca (15166)
• Orangeville, Ontario
24 May 07
You can get ideas from real life news stories. Heck, if Law & Order can do it, why can't you? LOL! Or from your own experiences, even other books you read. It is good to listen to what people are saying around you, even if they are not talking to you. Perhaps go and sit in a coffee shop and just listen to people's conversations. Writing prompts are very helpful. I wrote almost a whole book from writing prompts. I like http://www.creativewritingprompts.com. There is also a book by Judy Reeves that provides a prompt for every day of the year and then some. It is called "A Writer's Book of Days". Even if you can't get a story from a prompt, you are at least getting some practice and something could eventually come from it. Good luck!
• United States
24 May 07
Thanks! I really like that site. The prompts give me a chance to also break away from just one arena so to speak and gives me the ideas I need to write about pretty much anything. I'm going to be writing a lot more now. Good luck to you as well. Maybe we'll see each other published one day.
1 person likes this
@worldwise1 (14887)
• United States
23 May 07
I write also, secondtimeagain, and I know what you mean about the writer's block. I learned a long time ago that some of your best stories can come from actual events and people that you know of or remember from the past. Build your story around such an event or person. We write best about the things we know, experiences we have had. The best of luck to you!
• United States
23 May 07
Thanks! You made me think that sometimes when I'm feeling blank, I can strike up a conversation with a family member or friend and before you know it we're talking about past events or dreams we have and suddenly I get ideas. I've also had them read over what I've been doing and listen to them ramble about what they would like to see happen next. Best of luck to you too! Writing's a challenge, but well worth it :)
1 person likes this
• United States
25 May 07
If you don't mind venturing beyond the Internet, I have some suggestions: (1) I love colleting newspaper clips in an envelope, an a scrapbook or pasted into a notebook. I ask family and friends to clip articles out that they think are interesting, along with my own, then I find ideas from there. (2) I visit the library and photocopy articles from magazines to find ideas from. (3) I sit in coffee shops and write down what I see around me, what people are talking about and what I'm thinking about as I sit there. Of the three, the newspaper clipping collections are my favorite. Other ways to collect ideas are from blogs - people write about very random things that can easily be twisted into works of fiction.