A new story is hard to write. And generating ideas to fill it is even harder. When you’re staring at a blank page, Solomon’s words in Ecclesiastes might haunt you: “What has been will be again, what has been done will be done again; there is nothing new under the sun.”
With so many great stories already published, how do you develop one that’s unique?
The answer is brainstorming. But the process needs to be systematic—not a “brain dump” where you throw all your random thoughts onto paper. Brainstorming is a problem-solving technique that taps into the creative potential of your subconscious mind through what YouTuber Rachael Stephen calls “magic questions.”
Magic questions focus your imagination by qualifying and specifying the solutions you’re seeking. You can ask yourself thousands of questions in pursuit of new story material, but I’m going to give you only one that you can apply to theme, setting, plot, and characters to awaken inspiration: