101 Epic Adventure Story Prompts

creative writing adventure story

Do you want to write in the adventure genre but need help conjuring compelling and adventure-packed stories and concepts? Sometimes reading simple story prompts is the easiest way to get those creative juices flowing .

We get our ideas from many sources — news headlines, novels, television shows, movies, our lives, our fears, our phobias, etc. They can come from a scene or moment in a film that wasn’t fully explored. They can come from a single visual that entices the creative mind — a seed that continues to grow and grow until the writer is forced to finally put it to paper or screen.

In the spirit of helping writers find those seeds, here we offer 101 originally conceived adventure story prompts that you can use as inspiration for your next adventure story.

They may inspire screenplays, novels, short stories, or even smaller moments that you can include in what stories you are already writing.

Common Elements in the Adventure Genre

Adventure movies are the action genre's closest relative. They are seemingly one and the same beyond a single element — location .

Adventure movies are best defined as action movies set within an exotic location — something beyond an otherwise anonymous big city or small town.

They entail a character — or cast of characters — traveling to a new world, or many worlds, to attain what they so desire.

  • Indiana Jones movies globe-trot to many different locations.
  • The Pirates of the Caribbean  franchise takes us to many worlds across the open waters of the ocean.
  • The Goonies  takes children into the underground caves of a pirate's treasure.
  • The  Jumanji  franchise takes characters into the jungle worlds of a videogame.
  • Jungle Cruise  took us down the waters of the Amazon River.

Again, the key difference between a straightforward action movie and an adventure movie is location, location, location.

Notable adventure sub-genres include:

  • Disaster Flicks  —  The adventure aspect of these types of films entails characters struggling to survive through seemingly impossible and yes, disastrous, circumstances.  The Poseidon Adventure ,  The Towering Inferno ,  San Andreas , almost every Roland Emmerich movie, etc. These are all disaster flicks that take us on the ultimate adventure of survival. They can often be blended genres set within the context of natural disasters, alien invasions, and post-apocalyptic situations. In these cases, the disaster itself creates a unique location.
  • Quests —  The word quest is perhaps the most simple term to market. The mere mention of it entails a MacGuffin — a plot device in the form of some goal, desired object, or other motivators that the protagonist pursues — and the grand adventure of attaining it. The Indiana Jones franchise as a whole is perhaps the most well-known of this sub-genre.

Note: Because we’re all connected to the same pop culture, news headlines, and inspirations, any similarity to any past, present, or future screenplays, novels, short stories, television pilots, television series, plays, or any other creative works is purely coincidence. These story writing prompts were conceived on the fly without any research or Google search for inspiration.

101 Adventure Story Prompts

1. Two treasure-hunting teams race against time to find the same treasure in four different potential locations.  

2. A group of high school students traveling abroad must survive the elements when their plane crashes into the jungle. 

3. A gamer wakes up in his favorite car racing game and must win multiple races to survive.

4. A young boy searches for his lost father in the nearby mountains.

5. An astronaut crash lands on an exotic planet.

6. A group of middle school friends discovers a series of tunnels underneath their town.

7. A father and son go on a safari and must survive the elements when their guides are killed. 

8. A group of explorers searches for a long-lost ship that disappeared in the Antarctic two hundred years ago. 

9. A single mother learns that her college-age daughter has disappeared into the jungles of a foreign country.

10. A family struggles to survive a destructive meteor shower.

11. A man wakes up in a dream world that he can't escape. 

12. A woman joins the military and is shipped overseas as she intends to avenge the death of her soldier husband.

13. The last man on Earth flies into space to search for astronauts sent to colonize Mars ten years prior.

14. The last people on Earth go to China's Great Wall to evade attacking creatures that have killed everyone else on the planet.

15. A priest discovers the true entrance to biblical Hell. 

16. A woman fights her way across purgatory to find her true fate. 

17. A boy is taken to an alien world after displaying amazing fighting skills in his video game system. 

18. An FBI agent tracks down a group of bank robbers through the waters of the Grand Canyon. 

19. The President of the United States wakes up on a train taking him into a desert. 

20. A spy escapes to another continent to evade government assassins trying to take him out. 

21. A group of rock climbers discovers a drug deal in the Rockies and must survive as they are pursued. 

127 Hours

'127 Hours'

22. A retired assassin struggles to survive an onslaught of assassins trying to kill him near his mountain cabin home .

23. A gamer escapes into the fantasy world of his favorite game.

24. A classic horror movie fan escapes into the world of his favorite horror movies.

25. Professional thieves are tasked with stealing from a country's gold reserves hidden deep within a mountain.

26. Extreme paintball enthusiasts on a wilderness retreat stumble upon a group of armed criminals.

27. A president must fight off terrorists that attack him on a retreat. 

28. An FBI agent must team up with a cartel boss to find their missing sons in the jungles of Mexico. 

29. Explorers search the ocean for the lost city of Atlantis. 

30. A family finds a lost city underneath their farmland. 

31. A team of explorers is tasked with drilling a ship into the core of the Earth. 

32. A man is catapulted into an apocalyptic future to find the cause of impending doom. 

33. Extreme sports athletes are forced to use their skills for heists in the world's most exotic locations. 

34. College friends search for a mythical island paradise during spring break.  

35. A family is marooned on another planet. 

36. Racecar drivers race across the country in the ultimate race. 

37. Pilots discover a strange city in the clouds. 

38. A robot from the future finds a little girl and takes her to the future world.  

39. Kayakers are whisked away down the Mississippi River during a horrible storm and flood. 

40. A spelunker discovers an underground world. 

41. A bullied boy wakes up as a strong knight in a fantasy world. 

42. Deer hunters discover that they have been targeted by a master hunter that hunts only one prey — man. 

43. A family must survive when they are shipwrecked on a jungle island. 

Dora and the Lost City of Gold

'Dora and the Lost City of Gold'

44. A waitress is given a mysterious plane ticket as a tip for her excellent service. 

45. An old west gunslinger must survive a posse that is after him. 

46. The world's most deadly convicts are hired for an impossible adventure into the depths of space. 

47. A sailor decides to sail into the infamous Bermuda Triangle to find a lost friend.  

48. A town must survive the worst flood in history. 

49. Storm chasers must survive a unique weather system that creates multiple F5 tornadoes. 

50. A man that has uploaded his consciousness to a simulated reality fights to return to his real body and world.

51. A truck driver travels across the country as he's pursued by gangsters that want his cargo. 

52. An outcast nerd discovers that he's actually a revered prince from another planet, hidden by his royal family to escape an evil space lord. 

53. The story of the Titanic, but the Titanic is a luxury space cruiser that has hit a meteor made of ice. 

54. An astronaut stuck in cryosleep wakes up after his returning ship crashlands in medieval times. 

55. A Navy SEAL is shipwrecked on a deserted island full of vampires. 

56. A submarine crew discovers an underwater civilization of humans. 

57. An asteroid crashes into Earth as people struggle to survive. 

58. Archeologists unlock the mystery of the great pyramids. 

59. The world's last unicorn struggles to get to a safe world. 

60. A wizard from another realm must find a magical item lost on Earth before their evil counterpart does. 

61. A scientist finds the cure for cancer in the jungles but is pursued by a drug cartel wanting to sell it to the highest bidder. 

62. A space pilot goes on an interstellar race to find a coveted treasure. 

Guardians of the Galaxy

'Guardians of the Galaxy'

63. A family sailing the ocean waters must overcome the worst hurricane in history. 

64. Two escaped union soldiers with key intel must make their way through the southern battlefields of the Civil War-era United States. 

65. Old West train robbers must fight off infantry soldiers as the train races across the country. 

66. A Vietnam POW escapes a prisoner camp and struggles to make his way through the war-torn territories to freedom.

67. Criminals are now shipped into space on space prison ships as some try to escape. 

68. Peter Pan's mother tracks him down in Neverland. 

69. Competing treasure hunting families race on the open ocean waters to find a sunken treasure. 

70. A character within a Sim City-like game becomes self-aware and wants to escape to the real world. 

71.  A family vacationing in Hawaii unlocks a portal that transports them back in time. 

72. Asteroid miners struggle to survive an accident. 

73. A family of assassins must survive a syndicate's attempt to take them out while they're on vacation in Europe.

74. A family is transported back to the time of the dinosaurs and struggles to survive. 

75. A riverboat captain attempts the first trip down the Mississippi River. 

76. A futuristic gamer realizes what he thought was a virtual reality shooter game is actually real life. 

77. A movie director finds a way to transport his cast and crew back in time to save money on sets and wardrobes. 

78. Alien monsters chase the last living family on Earth across the country. 

79. A warrior is tasked with venturing to the Dark World to save a captive princess. 

80. A pirate that has fallen in love and wants to leave his pirate ways is chased down by his crew. 

81. Three swordsmen fight their way across a medieval world in search of Excalibur. 

The Green Knight

'The Green Knight'

82. A select group of individuals is invited to partake in the ultimate scavenger hunt. 

83. A best-selling author is transported into the fantasy world of his novels. 

84. A science fiction movie director realizes that the world he created for his hit franchise is real. 

85. Siblings mourn the death of their grandpa, only to discover that he's left them an old treasure map.  

86. A witch curses a group of children, causing them to shrink to the size of ants. 

87. A family must find each other after the worst earthquake in human history. 

88. An ancestor of the real Van Helsing is hunted across Europe by vampires.  

89. An off-duty detective on a cruise vacation with his family must fend off terrorists that take over the ship. 

90. A special forces team is catapulted into the world of Wonderland. 

91. An astronaut marooned on the dark side of the moon must make his way to a landing site before it is too late.  

92. A wilderness firefighter must parachute into a wildfire to find a missing family. 

93. A special forces team must retreat back to their base as they are pursued by vampires awakened within an ancient village.  

94. A group of ghost hunters must find their way out of a haunted castle. 

95. A family snorkeling along a reef during vacation finds themselves trapped in an underwater world.  

96. A portal to another world opens during a sleepover. 

97. A conspiracy theorist manages to break into Area 51 and discovers that it houses portals to alien worlds. 

98. An action star is kidnapped and hunted down by a tribe that believes he is the real deal.  

99. Career criminals utilize a city-wide blackout for their crimes. 

100. Scientists travel back to the world of dinosaurs to find a long-dead plant that could save humankind from extinction. 

101. A screenwriter awakens in the world of his science fiction script and must find a way back home.  



Share this with your writing peers or anyone that loves a good adventure story. Have some prompts of your own? Let us know on Facebook and Twitter !

Want More Ideas? Take a Look at Our Other  Genre-Based Story Prompts !

Ken Miyamoto has worked in the film industry for nearly two decades, most notably as a studio liaison for Sony Studios and then as a script reader and story analyst for Sony Pictures.

He has many studio meetings under his belt as a produced screenwriter, meeting with the likes of Sony, Dreamworks, Universal, Disney, Warner Brothers, as well as many production and management companies. He has had a previous development deal with Lionsgate, as well as multiple writing assignments, including the produced miniseries  Blackout , starring Anne Heche, Sean Patrick Flanery, Billy Zane, James Brolin, Haylie Duff, Brian Bloom, Eric La Salle, and Bruce Boxleitner, the feature thriller Hunter’s Creed , and many Lifetime thrillers. Follow Ken on Twitter @KenMovies

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A New Community of Writers

100  Adventure Writing Prompts

November 20, 2023 by Richard Leave a Comment

Hook Your Readers with 100  Adventure Writing Prompts

Adventure stories allow readers to journey to new worlds, experience thrilling quests, and immerse themselves in edge-of-your-seat action. Whether you’re a writer looking to craft an exciting tale or a reader seeking story inspiration, adventure prompts provide endless possibilities.

In this post, I’ve compiled 100  adventure writing prompts to ignite your imagination. These prompts offer a springboard to develop rich, suspenseful narratives filled with discovery, mystery, and heart-pounding drama. They’re ideal seeds for novels, short stories, or flash fiction.

The prompts range widely in genre and tone. You’ll find ideas for fantasy quests with dragons, pirates, and magic. Other prompts delve into historical fiction, time travel, space adventures, supernatural mysteries, survival stories, and more.

Let these prompts launch you into brainstorming new characters, settings, and plots. I encourage tweaking them or mashing up elements to make the ideas your own. Most importantly, choose prompts that speak to you and get those pages filled! Your next thrilling story awaits.

Now let’s dive in to 100 adventure writing prompts guaranteed to ignite ideas and get your creative juices flowing!

  • Your protagonist discovers a treasure map that leads to a hidden fortune. Where does it take them?
  • Your protagonist accidentally stumbles into a portal to another world. Describe this new fantastical place.
  • Your protagonist is tasked with rescuing a princess from an evil dragon. How do they defeat the dragon and save the day?
  • Your protagonist finds a magical artifact with powers beyond their wildest dreams. What happens when they start using its powers?
  • Your protagonist sets sail to explore uncharted tropical islands. What mysteries, creatures, and civilizations do they encounter?
  • Your protagonist is shrunk down to a tiny size. What everyday objects and creatures become sources of danger or refuge?
  • Your protagonist discovers an ancient prophecy about a rising evil. How do they work to prevent it from being fulfilled?
  • Your protagonist is sent on a quest to find a rare medicinal plant to save their village. What challenges arise along their journey?
  • Your protagonist falls overboard while sailing and ends up stranded on a desert island. How do they survive and escape?
  • Your protagonist chooses to climb a treacherous mountain peak. Describe their harrowing journey to the summit.
  • Your protagonist is hired to serve as guide and protector on a caravan through the desert. What perils emerge along the route?
  • Your protagonist is exploring a jungle when they stumble upon a lost civilization. What do they learn about this civilization’s secrets?
  • Your protagonist discovers a way to travel through time. What time period do they journey to first?
  • Your protagonist finds a baby dragon. As they care for it, the dragon grows bigger and more dangerous. How do they handle it?
  • Your protagonist sets out to hunt a sea monster that’s been terrorizing a village. How do they manage to defeat it?
  • Your protagonist enters an enchanted forest rumored to grant immortality. Do they achieve eternal life or encounter unexpected consequences?
  • Your protagonist is urgently traveling through the countryside when their horse throws a shoe. What unexpected adventure emerges from this delay?
  • Your protagonist discovers a rip in space-time that unleashes mythological beasts into the modern world. How do they try to stop them?
  • Your protagonist finds Excalibur, the legendary sword of King Arthur, embedded in a stone. Can they pull it out and claim its power?
  • Your protagonist stows away on a spaceship to escape life on a dreary mining colony. Where does the ship take them?
  • Your protagonist discovers a secret underground city beneath the subways. What kinds of people and creatures live in this hidden metropolis?
  • Your protagonist has the ability to manipulate or transform into water. What aquatic adventures can they undertake?
  • Your protagonist finds a bottle containing a powerful genie. What three wishes do they make?
  • Your protagonist can communicate with animals. What dangerous or exciting tasks do they accomplish with animal aid?
  • Your protagonist acquires a mythical object with the power to alter one truth about the past, present or future. How do they use this power?
  • Your protagonist is being hunted by a vengeful sorcerer. How do they manage to evade capture and defeat the sorcerer?
  • Your protagonist finds a mechanical device that transports them to an alternate universe version of 1889. How do they get back home?
  • Your protagonist discovers a doorway to the fairy realm at the base of an old oak tree. What do they see and experience in the fairy realm?
  • Your protagonist joins the crew of a pirate ship and embarks on swashbuckling high seas adventures. What foes and treasures do they encounter?
  • Your protagonist accidentally awakens an ancient mummy. How do they manage to survive the mummy’s deadly curse?
  • Your protagonist gains possession of a legendary pirate crew’s map to buried treasure. What obstacles block their path to fortune?
  • Your protagonist comes across an enormous dinosaur egg and helps hatch it. How do they raise this prehistoric creature?
  • Your protagonist stumbles into an underground lair filled with gold, jewels and artifacts. Why was this treasure hoard amassed and hidden away?
  • Your protagonist acquires a mythical harp that allows them to control others simply by playing it. What challenges emerge as a result?
  • Your protagonist discovers an abandoned castle filled with magical objects and strange creatures. What secrets does the castle hold?
  • Your protagonist is able to bring mythical creatures to life by painting or drawing them. What creature do they create, and what are the consequences?
  • Your protagonist finds a teleportation portal disguised as a closet door. What shocking place do they end up when they enter the portal?
  • Your protagonist accidentally releases a mischievous fairy from captivity. What antics and chaos ensue?
  • Your protagonist befriends a young dragon. As the dragon ages, how does the friendship evolve? What adventures do they embark on together?
  • Your protagonist finds a seemingly deserted island that’s actually inhabited by dinosaurs. How does your protagonist manage to survive?
  • Your protagonist discovers a magical library where the books serve as portals to other lands described within the pages. What marvels do they uncover by entering into these book worlds?
  • Your protagonist is rescued at sea by aquatic humanoid creatures. What does your protagonist learn by living among the underwater society of their saviors?
  • Your protagonist finds an enchanted music box that summons a ghostly dancer and eerie melodies when opened. What secrets might the music box reveal?
  • Your protagonist accidentally breaks a witch’s curse that has been placed on their village for centuries. What is the village like now that the curse has been lifted?
  • Your protagonist befriends a troll that guards an enchanted bridge. What wisdom or powers might the troll share if befriended?
  • Your protagonist discovers a tunnel that leads directly into the heart of a dormant volcano. What wonders and perils await inside?
  • Your protagonist receives a carrier pigeon inviting them to a mysterious masquerade ball at a castle on the night of a full moon. What happens if they attend?
  • Your protagonist stumbles upon a magical doorway at the top of an old lighthouse. Where does this doorway lead, and why was it hidden away?
  • Your protagonist finds a mystical looking-glass in an antique store. Gazing into it reveals a view into an alternate world. What does your protagonist see through the looking glass?
  • Your protagonist follows a white rabbit down a hole, and finds themself in a strange world called Wonderland. What adventures ensue in this illogical place?
  • Your protagonist is trapped inside a giant maze with walls that rearrange themselves. How will they manage to escape?
  • Your protagonist discovers a door in their basement that leads directly to the lost city of Atlantis. What underwater ruins and sunken treasures remain?
  • Your protagonist finds an enchanted apple that can temporarily give them the abilities of any animal they bite. What animal forms do they take on their adventures?
  • Your protagonist is shrunk down to only inches tall after wandering into a mysterious glowing forest. What ordinary sights are now extraodinary threats or wonders?
  • Your protagonist befriends a professor with a time machine and travels to the prehistoric age of dinosaurs. How do they manage to get back to the present day?
  • Your protagonist finds a magic lamp with a genie that can bring stories to life. What adventures emerge as they put their imagination to use?
  • Your protagonist follows a migrating herd of wild horses. What natural wonders do they witness along the horses’ journey?
  • Your protagonist discovers a hidden gateway to the world of myths, where creatures of legend reside. What trials await as they traverse this dangerous realm?
  • Your protagonist is rescued by a mysterious flying vehicle high in the mountains. Where does this advanced aircraft take them?
  • Your protagonist finds a telescope that allows seeing anywhere in the universe when looked through. What incredible cosmic wonders do they observe?
  • Your protagonist follows a trail of floating breadcrumbs deep into a dark forest. What sinister secrets lie at the end of the trail?
  • Your protagonist befriends a monster living in a nearby lake. What supposedly dangerous creature is revealed to be gentle?
  • Your protagonist finds a magical seashell that allows the wearer to breathe and travel underwater. What adventures lie beneath the waves?
  • Your protagonist discovers a sweetshop where all the treats are enchanted. What fantasies or adventures ensue after eating these magic candies?
  • Your protagonist follows a trail of mushrooms growing progressively larger. What awaits at the end where the mushrooms are gigantic?
  • Your protagonist finds a forgotten genie lamp washed up on the beach. What three wishes do they make?
  • Your protagonist discovers a rare poppy with magical sleep-inducing pollen. How do they use this plant for good or mischief?
  • Your protagonist befriends a talking owl who serves as their guide to the mysterious owl kingdom by night. What wisdom do they learn there?
  • Your protagonist finds a cache of dragon eggs and helps raise the hatchlings. What chaos ensues when the baby dragons grow up?
  • Your protagonist discovers a portal to another planet populated by aliens. How do they manage to communicate and blend in?
  • Your protagonist is ordered to slay a dragon menacing a kingdom. When they meet the dragon, it challenges their assumptions. What happens next?
  • Your protagonist follows a trail of glowing sprites into a mystical grove on the night of a full moon. What ritual ensues under the moonlight?
  • Your protagonist accidentally frees a genie who wreaks havoc with uncontrolled magic. How do they convince the genie to behave responsibly?
  • Your protagonist discovers a secret passage inside an old tree trunk. Where does the passage lead, and what awaits at the end?
  • Your protagonist befriends a wandering samurai warrior. What wisdom and skills are gained from this unlikely master?
  • Your protagonist finds a mechanical steed that can take them anywhere they think of. What fantastic destinations do they envision?
  • Your protagonist stumbles upon a red panda civilization hidden in the bamboo thickets of China. How do they communicate with these rare creatures?
  • Your protagonist discovers a pumpkin that transforms into a carriage and mice into horses at midnight. Where does this magic coach take them?
  • Your protagonist is caught in a clash between two wizarding schools. How do they mediate in this magical conflict?
  • Your protagonist discovers a cursed artifact in an abandoned temple. What deadly mishaps ensue as they try to break the curse?
  • Your protagonist befriends a young witch who teaches them magic spells. What mystical adventures can they embark on together?
  • Your protagonist follows a trail of sparking pixie dust into a strange new land in the clouds. What civilizations and creatures live in this aerial realm?
  • Your protagonist discovers a portal to the future world of tomorrow. What innovations and advances exist in this futuristic society?
  • Your protagonist escapes a sinking ship in a lifeboat and ends up stranded on a deserted island. How long can they survive using only the lifeboat’s contents and what they can gather?
  • Your protagonist finds a golden ticket that grants them a tour of a famously eccentric chocolatier’s secret factory. What fantastical sweets and contraptions exist behind its doors?
  • Your protagonist discovers a magical library where books can transport readers into the stories. Which books do they get immersed in, and how do they get back out?
  • Your protagonist follows a whispering voice only they can hear into an enchanted painting. What surreal realm exists inside the painting’s world?
  • Your protagonist befriends a young dragon and helps raise it in secret. How do they cope when it grows too large to remain hidden?
  • Your protagonist finds a teleportation crystal that allows instant travel anywhere. How do they use this power responsibly or recklessly?
  • Your protagonist discovers a doorway to a mirror dimension where everything is the reverse. How do they find their way back to the real world?
  • Your protagonist finds a phoenix egg and helps raise the mythical firebird inside. What chaos and wonders ensue when it reaches maturity?
  • Your protagonist follows a mysterious trail of pawprints into the deep woods. What creature left the prints, and where do the tracks lead?
  • Your protagonist is gifted a bottled fortune that can grant any wish. How do they decide what to wish for? What are the ramifications?
  • Your protagonist discovers a hidden valley populated by dinosaurs. Do they try to document it or keep it secret?
  • Your protagonist befriends a gnome who shows them the magical portal to the gnome kingdom. What marvels exist in the realm of the gnomes?
  • Your protagonist finds a doorway at the back of an old wardrobe leading into the magical realm of Narnia. What adventures unfold in this new world?
  • Your protagonist follows a trail of floating butterflies and emerges in a strange new land. How do they find their way back home?
  • Your protagonist discovers a mechanical steed that can fly anywhere instantly. Where does their journey take them?
  • Your protagonist finds a magic lamp with a genie that can make fiction become real. What story does your protagonist recreate?
  • Your protagonist follows a mysterious map to a mythical island untouched by man. What civilizations, creatures and natural wonders are found there?

I hope these adventure prompts got you writing! If you have something to share or a comment or a question, please drop it in the comments below! We have many other writing prompts on our site you may like.

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Richard Edwards is a writer and an educator and the owner editor of Every Writer. Follow him on Twitter, and check out our Submissions page .

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Teacher's Notepad

37 Adventure Writing Prompts

It’s time to spark the creative process, and what better way than to get thrown into a dramatic adventure story setting.

What I love about this is that it works so well for the full spectrum of writers from young to old – and reluctant to unstoppable wordsmiths.

An exciting adventure premise for your story is a fantastic place to get started writing, and it just right away allows the creativity to take over and weave the tale…

How should I use these adventure story ideas?

Well firstly, let me just say that they certainly don’t have to inspire just writing stories about adventuring!

While many do throw you into the midst of an adrenaline pumping action story moment, the most important thing in my opinion is that the writer is inspired to start writing immediately.

This is where the power of prompts lies, as right away you have a kernel around which to let the story unfold.

The flexibility of using story starters like this also means that a writers can get underway whether you are coming to it just looking for a daily writing challenge, or a teacher whose students are all getting randomly assigned their own story topic from the list below!

Using prompts in the classroom

For those teachers and homeschoolers most interested in how to go about using these with kids writing in your class, I’ve actually used a few different methods, as follows:

Print them out and let the kids pick their random topic out of a hat. This one always get a good reaction – and that heightened excitement around the writing activity I think is a good thing!

2. The choice

Put the whole list up on screen or otherwise, and let your class have the whole list, and allow them free-reign over what story starter they choose.

3. The assigned

Of course another option is just to hand out a topic to each student to write about – and it is worth noting that there is actually something to be said for the challenge of being handed a starting point of a story and needing to develop it.

4. The same

Or if you’d like to mix it up a bit, why not select one writing prompt and give that to the entire class? You and the class will have fun hearing how many different stories emerged from the same single starting point!

The Writing Prompts:

  • The ice axe struck the craggy wall, and seemed to be holding…
  • The hot air balloon drifted higher and higher, until the town below could barely be seen…
  • The roar of the crowd in the street was deafening, as the bulls came stampeding around the corner…
  • Then suddenly through the dense jungle, there was a sound…
  • The churning water of the rapids swirled around the kayak…
  • The walls of the log cabin were strong, but so was the bear she could hear lumbering around outside…
  • One foot in front of the other, his heart racing he stepped out onto the tightrope which spanned the chasm…
  • Ahead lay the desert dunes, stretching off over the horizon, but it was the only way…
  • The crashing waves wrenched her from her deep slumber, how many days and nights had passed…
  • From this mountain top he could see from one side of the island to the other, all the way to the shimmering sea on either side ..
  • The sides of the tent moved in the night, rustling quietly as the forest around him creaked in the wind…
  • The Huskies barked and yipped excitedly as the dog sled started moving more quickly…
  • The axe thudded into the tree once again, and with a great cracking sound it started to fall…
  • Their guide was experienced, and they’d seen far more animals on this safari than they’d expected, but nothing had prepared them for this…
  • They had been trekking through the jungle for days, and now here it was in front of them, the towering lost temples that had been swallowed up by the dense vines…
  • The wind roared in her ears as her bike flew down the twisting mountain road, the wheels hub whirring loudly as she went faster and faster…
  • The ankle was not broken, thank goodness, but she could not put any weight on it. How was she going to get out of this one she wondered…
  • The alligator was enormous, curling through the water behind his canoe as he made his way through the murky swamp…
  • Her fingers clung to the rocky ledge, as she looked back down to see how far she’d climbed…
  • The air near the rim of the volcano was acrid, and stung the nostrils…
  • The torch began to flicker, the only light he had so far down in this cave system…
  • She followed the arc of the Zipline, scanning across to the distant cliff where it ended…
  • The scuba mask gave her a clear little window into the underwater world she was visiting, and she kicked her fins to dive deeper towards the shipwreck…
  • The hangglider flapped quietly above him, the only noise he could hear so high up above the earth…
  • The sharks were getting closer now, bumping and jostling the cage she was in beneath the ocean surface…
  • Stepping out on stage, her heart was racing as the crowd roared, but she knew this was the moment she had been working so hard to get to…
  • Adrenalin pumped through her veins as she prepared to jump out of the door of the tiny plane, her parachute strapped to her back…
  • He could feel a gentle downward slope in the tunnel that they’d been exploring, but just how deep underground was it taking them…
  • Looking up into the sky he could see the giant eagle circling above him…
  • They could smell smoke and see the first embers starting to fall around them, the forest fire was getting closer and they had to go…
  • The ship rose and fell with the icy ocean, and the polar bears turned and watched as we drifted closer to shore…
  • The howling of wolves in the mountains behind our cabin made the sturdy door and roaring logfire feel all the better…
  • I’d never felt as alive as I did in that moment…
  • This morning I’d walked out my front door not expecting anything outside the ordinary, and yet here I was just a few hours later, looking around me and astonished at what I saw…
  • I pulled the rug from the middle of the room, and there as the mysterious stranger had told me, was an ancient trapdoor…
  • The painting of my ancestors hung on the wall, towering above us, and when I pulled at the side, it swung open to reveal a locked safe…
  • I woke before dawn, slung my pack over my shoulder and set off on the adventure of a lifetime…

creative writing adventure story

Enjoy writing your story!

I really enjoy hearing from our community about all the creative things that have stemmed from what we make available here.

You might also like our winter writing prompts or our fantasy story prompts .

Make sure you check back often as we are adding several new things each week for you to use for free 🙂

If you’ve got any requests for types or topics of more story starters, let me know!

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20 Fun Adventure Writing Prompts And Story Ideas

Adventure Writing Prompts

There’s a reason that adventure stories like Harry Potter are so popular. Kids, teenagers, and even adults love to use their imaginations and picture themselves going on a wild adventure. Writing adventure stories is equally enjoyable for the same reason. Starting an adventure story can be challenging for students, but with these fun adventure writing prompts and story ideas your students will be able to easily start their fun adventure story. Before we take a look at these adventure story starters, first let’s talk about what adventure stories are.

What Are Adventure Stories?

Adventure stories follow a certain formula. They include a hero who is going on a journey or quest in an unfamiliar environment . For example, in Lord Of The Rings, the ‘hero’ (Frodo) leaves his hometown and sets off on a quest to destroy the ring in the fires of Mount Doom. In adventure stories, there’s almost always a villain and a certain element of risk . As an adventure story progresses, the main character usually transforms from an ordinary person into a hero.

Fun Adventure Writing Prompts And Story Ideas

Someone Writing And Adventure Story

Here are 20 fun adventure writing prompts and story ideas:

  • You find a flute in the forest. When you play it, you are transported to another world. What’s the world like? How do you get back home?
  • One day, in P.E. class, you fall and bump your head. When you get home, you can understand everything your pet is saying. What does your pet say? What adventures do you and your pet have next?
  • On  Christmas  eve, Santa clause crashes his sleigh in your backyard. He needs your help to deliver all the presents before Christmas day. How do you help?
  • You move into a new house and find an old board game covered in dust. You decide to play the game, and when you roll the dice, you get sucked into a different world. What’s it like there? How do you escape?
  • Some equipment malfunctions while working in a laboratory on a top-secret project. The next day, you start to notice strange new powers. What powers do you have? What do you do with your new powers?
  • Your father is an inventor. You go into his office and find a ‘ray gun’. You accidentally fire it, it hits you, and you shrink to the size of an ant. What happens next?
  • While on vacation in Europe, you get lost in the backstreets of a city. There, you discover a portal that transports you back in time to World War 2. What do you do there?
  • While cleaning your room, you discover an old dusty book. You open it, and there is a key hidden inside. What does the key open?
  • You visit a charity store and buy a cool jacket there. When you put it on, you suddenly become invisible. What adventures do you get up to with your new jacket?
  • You go for a walk in a forest and get lost. As night falls, the trees and plants begin to talk. What do they say?
  • The year is 3022, and your cleaning robot starts behaving strangely. You look outside, and all the other robots appear to be malfunctioning. What happens next?
  • While trekking in the jungle, you come across some ancient ruins. In the center is a pool of clear water. What happens when you drink the water?
  • While cleaning the attic, you discover a tiny door. When you go through it, you are transported into the mind of somebody famous and can control what they do for a day. Who is the famous person? What adventures do you get up to?
  • At school, you discover a ghost. The ghost has some unfinished business and needs your help. How do you help the ghost?
  • Halfway through a 7-month journey to Mars, your ship gets struck by cosmic rays. What damage does it cause? What do you do to make it to Mars safely?
  • You have a time machine, and you travel back to prehistoric times. There, you kill a mosquito. When you return to the present day, the world is entirely different. What’s this world like now?
  • You drop and break your T.V remote control. You put it back together, and suddenly it controls real life. What happens next?
  • You find an old cell phone while clearing out your desk. You charge it up and suddenly receive a call. It’s a detective from the past who needs help solving a crime. What happens next?
  • While shopping for antique furniture, you come across an antique mirror that catches your eye. What happens when you look in the mirror?
  • During a thunderstorm, you get struck by lightning. The next day, you start having visions of crimes that haven’t taken place yet. What do you do next?

Adventure Story Ideas

Download PDF

Download these adventure writing prompts as a printable PDF.

Fantasy Writing Prompts Quick Writing Prompts 4th Grade Writing Prompts

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How to Write an Adventure Story

Last Updated: February 22, 2024 Fact Checked

wikiHow is a “wiki,” similar to Wikipedia, which means that many of our articles are co-written by multiple authors. To create this article, 22 people, some anonymous, worked to edit and improve it over time. This article has been fact-checked, ensuring the accuracy of any cited facts and confirming the authority of its sources. This article has been viewed 169,282 times. Learn more...

Everyone just loves to listen at a good old adventure story, who doesn't? It's fun to hear how adventure heroes like Indiana Jones explore the world in a thrilling way...Now you can write your own adventure story too! Just follow the steps below. (NOTE: this guide is all about how to make an adventure story similar to the Indiana Jones, this might not be the adventure story you're looking for.)

Step 1 Create your artifact.

Expert Q&A

Alicia Cook

  • Make cliff-hanging obstacles that are near death for your hero to overcome. Thanks Helpful 0 Not Helpful 0
  • Don't just focus on the artifact. Give your heroes a little or big problem they have to face from the villain. Thanks Helpful 0 Not Helpful 0
  • Be much convincing. You must be convincing when telling your adventure. For instance, your story must cope up with your setting because how can your listeners relate to the story if it's about Nazis chasing a treasure hunter in the year 2011? Nazis only existed from the 1930s-1950s. Thanks Helpful 0 Not Helpful 0

creative writing adventure story

  • Never mock or insult anything based from real life. Thanks Helpful 59 Not Helpful 9
  • Don't prolong your story. Your listeners might get bored. Thanks Helpful 57 Not Helpful 11
  • Be original. You must make your own story, don't copy from others or else you'll be a criminal for infringement. In case that you based your story from an inspiration (movie, novel, etc.) make your own concept out of it. Thanks Helpful 59 Not Helpful 12

Things You'll Need

  • pencil or pen
  • computer, notebook, or paper (for writhing)
  • reference sources

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Are the Backrooms Real

  • ↑ https://www.samhsa.gov/sites/default/files/programs_campaigns/brss_tacs/samhsa-storytelling-guide.pdf
  • ↑ https://www.cia.edu/blog/2014/11/quick-tips-for-character-design
  • ↑ https://www.scu.edu/ethics/focus-areas/more-focus-areas/resources/heroism-why-heroes-are-important/
  • ↑ https://positivepsychology.com/narrative-therapy/
  • ↑ https://owl.purdue.edu/owl/subject_specific_writing/creative_writing/characters_and_fiction_writing/writing_compelling_characters.html

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Write a story where your character is travelling a road that has no end.

Write a story where the laws of time and space begin to dissolve., start your story with it raining… anything but rain (e.g. flowers, cutlery, seashells, running shoes)., write a story where a regular household item becomes sentient..

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Write a story in which an important message is cut off, leaving characters to wonder or puzzle out what was left unsaid., write a story including the line “i can’t say it.”, write a story in which a conversation takes place where the true subject is only implied., start or finish your story with a speaker unable to finish their sentence, perhaps overcome by emotion., subscribe to our prompts newsletter.

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Write a story about a first or last kiss., write about a cynical character who somehow ends up on a blind date., write about a successful marriage proposal, or one that goes horribly wrong., write a love story without using the word “love.”, write about a character who isn’t nostalgic about their past at all, and show readers why., write a story about a grown-up sharing their favorite childhood video game with their child., write a time-travel story where a character from the present finds themselves in the 80s or 90s., write a story about someone finally gaining access into their family’s very old computer., start your story with a character finding a retro piece of tech they don’t recognize., win $250 in our short story competition 🏆.

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Creative Writing Prompts

When the idea to start a weekly newsletter with writing inspiration first came to us, we decided that we wanted to do more than provide people with topics to write about. We wanted to try and help authors form a regular writing habit and also give them a place to proudly display their work. So we started the weekly Creative Writing Prompts newsletter. Since then, Prompts has grown to a community of more than 450,000 authors, complete with its own literary magazine, Prompted .  

Here's how our contest works: every Friday, we send out a newsletter containing five creative writing prompts. Each week, the story ideas center around a different theme. Authors then have one week — until the following Friday — to submit a short story based on one of our prompts. A winner is picked each week to win $250 and is highlighted on our Reedsy Prompts page.

Interested in participating in our short story contest? Sign up here for more information! Or you can check out our full Terms of Use and our FAQ page .

Why we love creative writing prompts

If you've ever sat in front of a computer or notebook and felt the urge to start creating worlds, characters, and storylines — all the while finding yourself unable to do so — then you've met the author's age-old foe: writer's block. There's nothing more frustrating than finding the time but not the words to be creative. Enter our directory! If you're ready to kick writer's block to the curb and finally get started on your short story or novel, these unique story ideas might just be your ticket.

This list of 1800+ creative writing prompts has been created by the Reedsy team to help you develop a rock-solid writing routine. As all aspiring authors know, this is the #1 challenge — and solution! — for reaching your literary goals. Feel free to filter through different genres, which include...

Dramatic — If you want to make people laugh and cry within the same story, this might be your genre.

Funny — Whether satire or slapstick, this is an opportunity to write with your funny bone.

Romance — One of the most popular commercial genres out there. Check out these story ideas out if you love writing about love.

Fantasy — The beauty of this genre is that the possibilities are as endless as your imagination.

Dystopian – Explore the shadowy side of human nature and contemporary technology in dark speculative fiction.

Mystery — From whodunnits to cozy mysteries, it's time to bring out your inner detective.

Thriller and Suspense — There's nothing like a page-turner that elicits a gasp of surprise at the end.

High School — Encourage teens to let their imaginations run free.

Want to submit your own story ideas to help inspire fellow writers? Send them to us here.

After you find the perfect story idea

Finding inspiration is just one piece of the puzzle. Next, you need to refine your craft skills — and then display them to the world. We've worked hard to create resources that help you do just that! Check them out:

  • How to Write a Short Story That Gets Published — a free, ten-day course by Laura Mae Isaacman, a full-time editor who runs a book editing company in Brooklyn.
  • Best Literary Magazines of 2023 — a directory of 100+ reputable magazines that accept unsolicited submissions.
  • Writing Contests in 2023 — the finest contests of 2021 for fiction and non-fiction authors of short stories, poetry, essays, and more.

Beyond creative writing prompts: how to build a writing routine

While writing prompts are a great tactic to spark your creative sessions, a writer generally needs a couple more tools in their toolbelt when it comes to developing a rock-solid writing routine . To that end, here are a few more additional tips for incorporating your craft into your everyday life.

  • NNWT. Or, as book coach Kevin Johns calls it , “Non-Negotiable Writing Time.” This time should be scheduled into your routine, whether that’s once a day or once a week. Treat it as a serious commitment, and don’t schedule anything else during your NNWT unless it’s absolutely necessary.
  • Set word count goals. And make them realistic! Don’t start out with lofty goals you’re unlikely to achieve. Give some thought to how many words you think you can write a week, and start there. If you find you’re hitting your weekly or daily goals easily, keep upping the stakes as your craft time becomes more ingrained in your routine.
  • Talk to friends and family about the project you’re working on. Doing so means that those close to you are likely to check in about the status of your piece — which in turn keeps you more accountable.

Arm yourself against writer’s block. Writer’s block will inevitably come, no matter how much story ideas initially inspire you. So it’s best to be prepared with tips and tricks you can use to keep yourself on track before the block hits. You can find 20 solid tips here — including how to establish a relationship with your inner critic and apps that can help you defeat procrastination or lack of motivation.


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Explore more writing prompt ideas:

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Fiction Writing Prompts ⭢

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The Write Practice

Top 100 Short Story Ideas

by Joe Bunting | 128 comments

Do you want to write but just need a great story idea? Or perhaps you have too many ideas and can’t choose the best one? Well, good news. We’ve got you covered.

Below are one hundred short story ideas for all your favorite genres. You can use them as a book idea, as writing prompts for writing contests , for stories to publish in literary magazines , or just for fun!

Use these 100 story ideas to get your creative writing started now.

Editor’s note: This is a recurring guide, regularly updated with ideas and information.

100 Top Short Story Ideas

If you're in a hurry, here's my 10 best story ideas in brief, or scroll down for the full version.

Top 10 Story Ideas

  • Tell the story of a scar.
  • A group of children discover a dead body.
  • A young prodigy becomes orphaned.
  • A middle-aged woman discovers a ghost.
  • A woman who is deeply in love is crushed when her fiancé breaks up with her.
  • A talented young man's deepest fear is holding his life back. 
  • A poor young boy or girl comes into an unexpected fortune.
  • A shy, young woman unexpectedly bumps into her soulmate.
  • A long journey is interrupted by a disaster.
  • A young couple run into the path of a psychopath.

The Write Structure

Why Creative Writing Prompts Are Helpful

Below, you'll find our best creative writing prompts and plot ideas for every genre, but first, why do we use prompts? Is it just a waste of time, or can they actually help you? Here are three reasons we  love writing prompts at The Write Practice:

1. Practice the Language!

Even for those of us who are native English speakers, we're all on a language journey to go from beginners to skilled writers. To make progress on this language journey, you have to practice, and at The Write Practice, believe it or not, we're really into practice! Creative writing prompts are easy, fun ways to practice.

Use the prompts below to practice your storytelling and use of language. The more you practice, the better of a writer you'll become.

2. When you have no ideas and are stuck.

Sometimes, you want to write, but you can't think up any ideas. You could either just sit there, staring at a blank page, or you could find a few ideas to help you get started. Even better if the list of ideas is curated from our best plot ideas over the last decade that we've been publishing lessons, writing exercises, and prompts.

Use the story ideas below to get your writing started. Then when your creativity is warmed up, you'll start to come up with your own ideas!

3. To develop your own ideas.

Maybe you do have an idea already, but you're not sure it's good. Or maybe you feel like it's just missing some small piece to make it better. By reading other ideas, and incorporating your favorites into your   story, you can fill your plot holes and generate creative ideas of your own.

Use the story ideas below to develop your own ideas.

4. They're fun!

Thousands of writers use the prompts below every month, some at home, some in classrooms, and even a few pros at their writing “office.” Why? Because writing prompts can be fun. They get your creativity started, help you come up with new ideas of your own, and often take your writing in new, unexpected directions.

Use the plot ideas to have more fun with writing!

How to Write a Story

One last thing before we get to the 100 story ideas, let’s talk about how to write a great short story . (Already know how to write a great story? No problem. Just skip down to the ideas below.)

  • First, read stories. If you’ve never read a story, you’re going to have a hard time writing one. Where do you find great stories? There are a lot of places, but check out our list of  46 Literary Magazines  we’ve curated over here .
  • Write your story in a single sitting. Write the first draft of your story in as short a time as possible, and if you’re writing a short story , try to write it in one sitting. Trust me, this works. Everyone hates being interrupted when they’re telling compelling stories. Use that to your advantage and don’t stop writing until you’ve finished telling yours.
  • Read your draft. Read your story through once, without changing anything. This will give you a sense of what work it needs going forward.
  • Write a premise. After reading your first draft, get your head around the main idea behind your story by summarizing your story in a one sentence premise. Your premise should contain four things: a character, a goal, a situation, and a special sauce. Not sure what that means or how to actually do that? Here’s a full premise writing guide .
  • Write, edit, write, and edit. Good writing is rewriting. Use your second draft to fill in the plot holes and cut out the extraneous scenes and characters you discovered when you read the first draft in step #2. Then, polish up your final draft on the next round of edits.
  • Submit! Real writers don’t keep their writing all to themselves. They share it. Submit your story to a literary magazine , an anthology series , enter it into a writing contest , or even share it with a small group of friends. And if it gets rejected, don’t feel bad. You’ll be in good company.

Want to know more? Learn more about how to write a great short story here .

Our 100 Best Short Story Ideas, Plot Ideas, and Creative Writing Prompts

Ready to get writing? Here are our 100 best short story ideas to kickstart your writing. Enjoy!

10 Best General Short Story Ideas

Our first batch of plot ideas are for any kind of story, whether a spy thriller or a memoir of your personal life story. Here are the best story ideas:

  • Tell the story of a scar, whether a physical scar or emotional one. To be a writer, said Stephen King, “The only requirement is the ability to  remember every scar .”
  • A group of children discover a dead body. Good writers don’t turn away from death, which is, after all, the  universal human experience. Instead, they look it directly into its dark face and describe what they see on the page.
  • A young prodigy becomes orphaned. Orphans are uniquely vulnerable, and as such, they have the most potential for growth.
  • A middle-aged woman discovers a ghost. What do Edgar Allen Poe, Ron Weasley, King Saul from the Bible, Odysseus, and Ebenezer Scrooge have in common? They all encountered ghosts!
  • A woman who is deeply in love is crushed when her fiancé breaks up with her. “In life every ending is just a new beginning,” says Dakota Fanning’s character in Uptown Girls.
  • A talented young man’s deepest fear is holding his life back. Your character’s biggest fear is your story’s secret weapon. Don’t run from it, write about it.
  • A poor young boy or girl comes into an unexpected fortune. Not all fortunes are good. Sometimes discovering a fortune will destroy your life.
  • A shy, young woman unexpectedly bumps into her soulmate (literally bumps into him). In film, this is called the “meet cute,” when the hero bumps into the heroine in the coffee shop or the department store or the hallway, knocking her books to the floor, and forcing them into conversation.
  • A long journey is interrupted by a disaster. Who hasn’t been longing to get to a destination only to be delayed by something unexpected? This is the plot of  Gravity ,  The Odyssey , and even  Lord of the Rings .
  • A young couple run into the path of a psychopath. Monsters, whether people who do monstrous things or scaly beasts or a monster of a natural disaster, reveal what’s really inside a person. Let your character fall into the path of a monster and see how they handle themselves.

Now that you have an idea, learn exactly what to do with it.  Check out my new book The Write Structure which helps writers take their ideas and write books readers love. Click to check out  The Write Structure  here.

More Short Story Ideas Based on Genre

Need more ideas? Here are ideas based on whichever literary genre you write. Use them as character inspiration, to start your own story, or borrow pieces to generate your own ideas. The only rule is, have fun writing!

By the way,  for more story writing tips for each these plot types, check out our full guide to the 10 types of stories here .

10 Thriller Story Ideas

A thriller is any story that “thrills” the reader—i.e., gets adrenaline pumping, the heart racing, and the emotions piqued.

Thrillers come in all shapes and forms, dipping freely into other genres. In other words, expect the unexpected!

Here are a few of my favorite thriller story ideas :

Rosa Rivera-Ortiz is an up-and-coming lawyer in a San Diego firm. Held back by her ethnicity and her gender, she works twice as hard as her colleagues, and she’s as surprised as anyone when she’s requested specifically for a high-profile case. Bron Welty, an A-list actor and action star, has been arrested for the murder of his live-in housekeeper. The cop heading the case is older, ex-military, a veteran of more than one war, and an occasional sufferer of PTSD. Rosa’s hired to defend the movie star; and it seems like an easy win until she uncovers some secrets that not only make her believe her client is guilty, but may be one of the worst serial killers in the past two decades… and he knows she found out .

It’s the Cold War. Sergei, a double-agent for the CIA working in Berlin, is about to retire when he’s given one final mission: he’s been asked to “defect” to the USSR to help find and assassinate a suspected double-agent for the Kremlin. Sergei is highly trusted, and he’s given to understand that this mission is need-to-know only between him and very few superior officers. But as he falls deeper into the folds of the Iron Curtain, he begins to suspect that his superior officer might just be the mole, and the mark Sergei’s been sent to kill is on the cusp of exposing the leak.

It is 1800. A lighthouse on a barren cliff in Canada. Two lighthouse keepers, German immigrants, are alone for the winter and effectively cut off from the rest of the world until the ice thaws. Both Wilhelm and Matthias are settled in for the long haul with warm clothes, canned goods, and matches a-plenty. Then Wilhelm starts hearing voices. His personal belongings disappear from where he’d placed them, only to reappear in strange spots—like the catwalk, or dangling beneath the spiral stair knotted in brown twine. Matthias begs innocence. Little by little, Wilhelm grows convinced that Matthias is trying to convince him (Wilhelm) to kill himself. Is the insanity real, or is this really Matthias’ doing? And if it is real, what will he do to defend himself? There are so many months until the thaw. 

thriller story ideas

20 Mystery Story Ideas

Enjoy a good whodunit? Then you’ll love these mystery story ideas .

Here are a few of my favorites:

Ever hear the phrase, “It is not who fired the shot but who paid for the bullet?” This is a philosophy Tomoe Gozen lives by. Brave and clever, Tomoe follows clues until she learns who ordered the murder: Emperor Antoku himself. But why would the emperor of Japan want to kill a lowly soldier?

Mystery writer Dan Rodriguez takes the subway every day. Every day, nothing happens. He wears earbuds and a hoodie; he’s ignored, and he ignores. Then one evening, on his way home from a stressful meeting with his publisher, Dan is startled out of his funk when a frantic Middle-Eastern man knocks him over at a dead run, then races up the stairs—pursued by several other thugs. The Middle-Eastern man is shot; and Dan discovers a mysterious package in the front pocket of his hoodie. What’s inside, and what does he need to do to survive the answer?

A headless corpse is found in a freshly-dug grave in Arkansas. The local police chief, Arley Socket, has never had to deal with more than missing gas cans and treed cats. His exploration of this weird murder digs up a mystery older than the 100-year-old town of Jericho that harkens all the way back to a European blood-feud.

story ideas

20 Romance Story Ideas

Ready to write a love story? Or perhaps you want to create a subplot with a secondary character? We've got ideas for you!

Hint: When it comes to romance, a sense of humor is always a good idea. Have fun! Here are a few of my favorite love story ideas :

She’s a cop. He’s the owner of a jewelry store. A sudden rash of break-ins brings her to his store over and over and over again, until it becomes obvious that he might be tripping the alarm on purpose—just to see her. That’s illegal—but she’s kind of falling for him, too. Write the moment she realizes she has to do something about this crazy illicit courtship.

Colorado Animal Rescue has never been more challenging than after that zoo caught on fire. Sally Cougar (no jokes on the name, or she’ll kill you) tracks down three missing tiger cubs, only to find they’ve been adopted by millionaire Bryce Champion. Thanks to an antiquated law on the books, he legally has the right to keep them. It’s going to take everything Sally has to get those tiger cubs back.

He’s a museum curator with a fetish for perfection. No one’s ever gotten close to him; how could they? They’re never as perfect as the portraits, the sculptures, the art that never changes. Then one day, an intern is hired on—a young, messy, disorganized intern, whose hair and desk are in a constant state of disarray. The curator is going half-mad with this walking embodiment of chaos; so why can’t the he stand the thought of the intern leaving at the end of their assistantship?

20 romance story ideas

20 Sci-Fi Story Ideas

From the minimum-wage-earning, ancient-artifact-hunting time traveller to the space-exploring, sentient dinosaurs, these sci-fi writing prompts will get you set loose your inner nerd.

Here are a few of my favorite sci-fi ideas :

In a future society, neural implants translate music into physical pleasure, and earphones (“jacking in”) are now the drug of choice. Write either from the perspective of a music addict, OR the Sonforce agent (sonance + enforcer) who has the job of cracking down.

It’s the year 5000. Our planet was wrecked in the great Crisis of 3500, and remaining human civilization survives only in a half dozen giant domed cities. There are two unbreakable rules: strict adherence to Life Quality (recycling doesn’t even begin to cover these laws), and a complete ban on reproduction (only the “worthy” are permitted to create new humans). Write from the perspective of a young woman who just discovered she’s been chosen to reproduce—but she has no interest in being a mother.

So yeah, ancient Egypt really was “all that” after all, and the pyramids turn out to be fully functional spaceships (the limestone was to preserve the electronics hidden inside). Write from the perspective of the tourist exploring the ancient society who accidentally turns one on.

sci-fi story ideas

20 Fantasy Story Ideas

Need a dose of sword-in-the-stone, hero and/or heroine packed coming-of-age glory?  We love fantasy stories!

Here are a few of my favorite fantasy story ideas:

Bored teenaged wizards throwing a graduation celebration.

Uncomfortable wedding preparation between a magic wielding family tree and those more on the Muggle side of things.

A fairy prince who decides to abandon his responsibilities to become a street musician.

Just try to not have fun writing (or even just reading!) these fantasy writing prompts.

fantasy story ideas

The Secret to Choosing the Best Story Idea

Stories, more than any other artistic expression, have the power to make people care. Stories have the ability to change people’s lives.

But to write a great story, a life-changing story, don’t just write about what your characters did, said, and saw. Ask yourself, “Where do I fit in to this story? What is my personal connection to this story?”

Robert Frost said this:

If you can connect your personal story to the story you’re writing, you will not only be more motivated to finish your story, you might just be able to change the lives of your readers.

Next Step: Write Your Best Story

No matter how good your idea, writing a story or a book can be a long difficult process. How do you create an outline, come up with a great plot, and then actually  finish  it?

My new book  The Write Structure  will help. You'll learn how to take your idea and structure a strong plot around it. Then you'll be guided through the exact process I've used to write dozens of short stories and over fifteen books.

You can learn more about   The Write Structure  and get your copy here.

Get The Write Structure here »

Have a great short story idea?  We'd love to hear it. Share it in the comments !

Choose one of these ideas and write a short story in one sitting (aim for 1,000 words or less!). When you're finished, share your story in the practice box below (or our latest writing contest ) for feedback from the community. And if you share, please be sure to comment on a few stories by other writers.

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Joe Bunting

Joe Bunting is an author and the leader of The Write Practice community. He is also the author of the new book Crowdsourcing Paris , a real life adventure story set in France. It was a #1 New Release on Amazon. Follow him on Instagram (@jhbunting).

Want best-seller coaching? Book Joe here.

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  • Writing Prompts

150+ Story Starters: Creative Sentences To Start A Story

The most important thing about writing is finding a good idea . You have to have a great idea to write a story. You have to be able to see the whole picture before you can start to write it. Sometimes, you might need help with that. Story starters are a great way to get the story rolling. You can use them to kick off a story, start a character in a story or even start a scene in a story.

When you start writing a story, you need to have a hook. A hook can be a character or a plot device. It can also be a setting, something like “A young man came into a bar with a horse.” or a setting like “It was the summer of 1969, and there were no cell phones.” The first sentence of a story is often the hook. It can also be a premise or a situation, such as, “A strange old man in a black cloak was sitting on the train platform.”

Story starters are a way to quickly get the story going. They give the reader a place to start reading your story. Some story starters are obvious, and some are not. The best story starters are the ones that give the reader a glimpse into the story. They can be a part of a story or a part of a scene. They can be a way to show the reader the mood of a story. If you want to start a story, you can use a simple sentence. You can also use a question or an inspirational quote. In this post, we have listed over 150 story starters to get your story started with a bang! A great way to use these story starters is at the start of the Finish The Story game .

If you want more story starters, check out this video on some creative story starter sentences to use in your stories:

150+ Creative Story Starters

Here is a list of good sentences to start a story with:

  • I’ve read about a million stories about princesses but never thought I could ever be one.
  • There was once a man who was very old, but he was wise. He lived for a very long time, and he was very happy.
  • What is the difference between a man and a cat? A cat has nine lives.
  • In the middle of the night, a boy is running through the woods.
  • It is the end of the world.
  • He knew he was not allowed to look into the eyes of the princess, but he couldn’t help himself.
  • The year is 1893. A young boy was running away from home.
  • What if the Forest was actually a magical portal to another dimension, the Forest was a portal to the Otherworld?
  • In the Forest, you will find a vast number of magical beings of all sorts. 
  • It was the middle of the night, and the forest was quiet. No bugs or animals disturbed the silence. There were no birds, no chirping. 
  • If you wish to stay in the Forest, you will need to follow these rules: No one shall leave the Forest. No one shall enter. No one shall take anything from the Forest.
  • “It was a terrible day,” said the old man in a raspy voice.
  • A cat is flying through the air, higher and higher, when it happens, and the cat doesn’t know how it got there, how it got to be in the sky.
  • I was lying in the woods, and I was daydreaming.
  • The Earth is a world of wonders. 
  • The fairy is the most amazing creature I have ever met.
  • A young girl was sitting on a tree stump at the edge of a river when she noticed a magical tree growing in the water.
  • My dancing rat is dressed in a jacket, a tie and glasses, which make him look like a person. 
  • In the darkness of the night, I am alone, but I know that I am not. 
  • Owls are the oldest, and most intelligent, of all birds.
  • My name is Reyna, and I am a fox. 
  • The woman was drowning.
  • One day, he was walking in the forest.
  • It was a dark and stormy night…
  • There was a young girl who could not sleep…
  • A boy in a black cape rode on a white horse…
  • A crazy old man in a black cloak was sitting in the middle of the street…
  • The sun was setting on a beautiful summer day…
  • The dog was restless…”
  • There was a young boy in a brown coat…
  • I met a young man in the woods…
  • In the middle of a dark forest…
  • The young girl was at home with her family…
  • There was a young man who was sitting on a …
  • A young man came into a bar with a horse…
  • I have had a lot of bad dreams…
  • He was a man who wanted to be king…
  • It was the summer of 1969, and there were no cell phones.
  • I know what you’re thinking. But no, I don’t want to be a vegetarian. The worst part is I don’t like the taste.
  • She looked at the boy and decided to ask him why he wasn’t eating. She didn’t want to look mean, but she was going to ask him anyway.
  • The song played on the radio, as Samual wiped away his tears.
  • This was the part when everything was about to go downhill. But it didn’t…
  • “Why make life harder for yourself?” asked Claire, as she bit into her apple.
  • She made a promise to herself that she would never do it.
  • I was able to escape.
  • I was reading a book when the accident happened.
  • “I can’t stand up for people who lie and cheat.” I cried.
  • You look at me and I feel beautiful.
  • I know what I want to be when I grow up.
  • We didn’t have much money. But we knew how to throw a good party.
  • The wind blew on the silent streets of London.
  • What do you get when you cross an angry bee and my sister?
  • The flight was slow and bumpy. I was half asleep when the captain announced we were going down.
  • At the far end of the city was a river that was overgrown with weeds. 
  • It was a quiet night in the middle of a busy week.
  • One afternoon, I was eating a sandwich in the park when I spotted a stranger.
  • In the late afternoon, a few students sat on the lawn reading.
  • The fireflies were dancing in the twilight as the sunset.
  • In the early evening, the children played in the park.
  • The sun was setting and the moon was rising.
  • A crowd gathered in the square as the band played.
  • The top of the water tower shone in the moonlight.
  • The light in the living room was on, but the light in the kitchen was off.
  •  When I was a little boy, I used to make up stories about the adventures of these amazing animals, creatures, and so on. 
  • All of the sudden, I realized I was standing in the middle of an open field surrounded by nothing but wildflowers, and the only thing I remembered about it was that I’d never seen a tree before.
  • It’s the kind of thing that’s only happened to me once before in my life, but it’s so cool to see it.
  • They gave him a little wave as they drove away.
  • The car had left the parking lot, and a few hours later we arrived home.
  • They were going to play a game of bingo.
  • He’d made up his mind to do it. He’d have to tell her soon, though. He was waiting for a moment when they were alone and he could say it without feeling like an idiot. But when that moment came, he couldn’t think of anything to say.
  • Jamie always wanted to own a plane, but his parents were a little tight on the budget. So he’d been saving up to buy one of his own. 
  • The night was getting colder, and the wind was blowing in from the west.
  • The doctor stared down at the small, withered corpse.
  • She’d never been in the woods before, but she wasn’t afraid.
  • The kids were having a great time in the playground.
  • The police caught the thieves red-handed.
  • The world needs a hero more than ever.
  • Mother always said, “Be good and nice things will happen…”
  • There is a difference between what you see and what you think you see.
  • The sun was low in the sky and the air was warm.
  • “It’s time to go home,” she said, “I’m getting a headache.”
  • It was a cold winter’s day, and the snow had come early.
  • I found a wounded bird in my garden.
  • “You should have seen the look on my face.”
  • He opened the door and stepped back.
  • My father used to say, “All good things come to an end.”
  • The problem with fast cars is that they break so easily.
  • “What do you think of this one?” asked Mindy.
  • “If I asked you to do something, would you do it?” asked Jacob.
  • I was surprised to see her on the bus.
  • I was never the most popular one in my class.
  • We had a bad fight that day.
  • The coffee machine had stopped working, so I went to the kitchen to make myself a cup of tea.
  • It was a muggy night, and the air-conditioning unit was so loud it hurt my ears.
  • I had a sleepless night because I couldn’t get my head to turn off.
  • I woke up at dawn and heard a horrible noise.
  • I was so tired I didn’t know if I’d be able to sleep that night.
  • I put on the light and looked at myself in the mirror.
  • I decided to go in, but the door was locked.
  • A man in a red sweater stood staring at a little kitten as if it was on fire.
  • “It’s so beautiful,” he said, “I’m going to take a picture.”
  • “I think we’re lost,” he said, “It’s all your fault.”
  • It’s hard to imagine what a better life might be like
  • He was a tall, lanky man, with a long face, a nose like a pin, and a thin, sandy moustache.
  • He had a face like a lion’s and an eye like a hawk’s.
  • The man was so broad and strong that it was as if a mountain had been folded up and carried in his belly.
  • I opened the door. I didn’t see her, but I knew she was there.
  • I walked down the street. I couldn’t help feeling a little guilty.
  • I arrived at my parents’ home at 8:00 AM.
  • The nurse had been very helpful.
  • On the table was an array of desserts.
  • I had just finished putting the last of my books in the trunk.
  • A car horn honked, startling me.
  • The kitchen was full of pots and pans.
  • There are too many things to remember.
  • The world was my oyster. I was born with a silver spoon in my mouth.
  •  “My grandfather was a World War II veteran. He was a decorated hero who’d earned himself a Silver Star, a Bronze Star, and a Purple Heart.
  • Beneath the menacing, skeletal shadow of the mountain, a hermit sat on his ledge. His gnarled hands folded on his gnarled knees. His eyes stared blankly into the fog. 
  • I heard a story about a dragon, who was said to be the size of a house, that lived on the top of the tallest mountain in the world.
  •  I was told a story about a man who found a golden treasure, which was buried in this very park.
  • He stood alone in the middle of a dark and silent room, his head cocked to one side, the brown locks of his hair, which were parted in the middle, falling down over his eyes.
  •  Growing up, I was the black sheep of the family. I had my father’s eyes, but my mother’s smile.
  • Once upon a time, there was a woman named Miss Muffett, and she lived in a big house with many rooms.
  • When I was a child, my mother told me that the water looked so bright because the sun was shining on it. I did not understand what she meant at the time.    
  •  The man in the boat took the water bottle and drank from it as he paddled away.
  • The man looked at the child with a mixture of pity and contempt.
  • An old man and his grandson sat in their garden. The old man told his grandson to dig a hole. 
  • An old woman was taking a walk on the beach. The tide was high and she had to wade through the water to get to the other side.
  • She looked up at the clock and saw that it was five minutes past seven.
  • The man looked up from the map he was studying. “How’s it going, mate?”
  • I was in my room on the third floor, staring out of the window.
  • A dark silhouette of a woman stood in the doorway.
  • The church bells began to ring.
  • The moon rose above the horizon.
  • A bright light shone over the road.
  • The night sky began to glow.
  • I could hear my mother cooking in the kitchen.
  • The fog began to roll in.
  • He came in late to the class and sat at the back.
  • A young boy picked up a penny and put it in his pocket.
  • He went to the bathroom and looked at his face in the mirror.
  • It was the age of wisdom and the age of foolishness. We once had everything and now we have nothing.
  • A young man died yesterday, and no one knows why.
  • The boy was a little boy. He was not yet a man. He lived in a house in a big city.
  • They had just returned from the theatre when the phone rang.
  • I walked up to the front of the store and noticed the neon sign was out.
  • I always wondered what happened to Mary.
  • I stopped to say hello and then walked on.
  • The boy’s mother didn’t want him to play outside…
  • The lights suddenly went out…
  • After 10 years in prison, he was finally out.
  • The raindrops pelted the window, which was set high up on the wall, and I could see it was a clear day outside.
  • My friend and I had just finished a large pizza, and we were about to open our second.
  • I love the smell of the ocean, but it never smells as good as it does when the waves are crashing.
  • They just stood there, staring at each other.
  • A party was in full swing until the music stopped.

For more ideas on how to start your story, check out these first-line writing prompts . Did you find this list of creative story starters useful? Let us know in the comments below!

150 Story Starters

Marty the wizard is the master of Imagine Forest. When he's not reading a ton of books or writing some of his own tales, he loves to be surrounded by the magical creatures that live in Imagine Forest. While living in his tree house he has devoted his time to helping children around the world with their writing skills and creativity.

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