Need Ideas for Stories? Here’s Brainstorming Help!

Need Ideas for Stories? Here’s Brainstorming Help!

This is a link to a wonderful set of tips on brainstorming a story idea.

They are from Jane Yolen (and Scholastic Books). Yolen is an amazing author, having published over 300 books! You probably have read some of her books — the Young Merlin trilogy, or the Pit Dragon trilogy, or stand-alones like The Devil’s Arithmetic, etc.

Here are some of Jane Yolen’s tips for brainstorming warm-ups . . . as you start to plan a story.

These tips are especially for writing myths (stories about something natural, like how once upon a time the moon got up in the sky).

But, of course, you can use the same tips for writing stories about characters, or situations! These are great steps for brainstorming some fresh ideas for your next story, whatever it is.

Jane Yolen’s five simple steps:
1. Pick out what you want to write about.
2. Observe carefully.
3. Write down some facts about that thing (or situation or person).
4. Write down a few key words from your research.
5. Now . . . ask . . . “What If . . . ???”

That’s just a short outline of the steps. Read Yolen’s article. (It will just take a minute or two. You might want to print it out for your writing binder. It’s a keeper.)

And then, next time you’re in the library, check out some of Yolen’s books. Maybe now you can better understand how she writes so creatively . . . she’s clearly a gifted professional brainstormer!

Follow her advice . . . and you can become one, too!

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