This week’s writing prompt is going to be a bit different to previous posts. I think it’s time to switch up our process, and instead of creating new ideas we develop already blossoming ones.
I’m guessing you’re here because you’re a writer. You have a story you want to tell, but either you’re stuck and wanting to diverge for a while, or you’re planning and experimenting, or you’ve just finished your piece and your letting loose a little.
Whoever you are, whyever you’re here, grab your pen and paper or laptop depending on how old school you are and let’s get started…
Develop current characters
If you have a piece you’re planning or working on right now, either pick one of your main characters – your protagonist is a good place to start – or a character you feel is underdeveloped.
Now write them a setting that is so different to the one you’ve put them in for your main story, or an extreme situation. Some examples can be:
- Outer space being chased by aliens
- Battling lions in an ancient Roman gladiatorial fight to the death
- Sailing the high seas during a mighty storm
- Fist to fist fighting on top of a thirty storey building
- In a job interview for President
- In a supermarket when a celebrity comes over to ask for help
Take your pick! Or make up your own. Just make sure your character and you are uncomfortable and see where it takes you.
Why do it?
An excersize like this really helps you to understand the mind of your characters. Most writers realise that characters have a tendency to develop their own thoughts and feelings and decide for themselves exactly how their story should go.
You need a 3D character for this to work. If your character is a stranger to you, you won’t be able to decide what would actually happen in those extreme circumstances. If you have a fully fleshed out character then they’ll basically do the writing for you. In your main story your plot might dictate your characters’ actions but this helps to shape them properly and establish them fully in your mind.
Let me know how you get on!