Alright, it’s time to go through another story notebook. This one covers the spring and summer of 2010, right after I graduated. It was a weird transitional period in my life, when I didn’t really know what I was doing or where I was going, but I was determined to keep on writing anyway.
I filled three pocket notebooks with story ideas in 2010, and last time I mistakenly thought I’d covered one that went from graduation through the end of the year. While putting my records in order before going abroad, I found that this one actually came a little earlier.
Lots and lots of story ideas…2010 was definitely a good year for that. So anyhow, here we go:
A planet settled by people with aircars: there will be no asphalt roads, only packed earth.
An interesting consequence of futuristic technology; too often, stories come up with something flashy without really thinking through all of the implications. Can you imagine a world without asphalt? If you can, then please take me there!
A task-oriented woman who thinks men are fickle because they’re always trying to come across as macho, trying to save face, etc.
This makes me think of something I heard somewhere about gender roles and politicians. If I remember it correctly, most men go into politics for the fame, power, and glory, while most women go into politics because something in their community is broken and they feel it’s their duty to fix it. Not sure if that’s true or not, but this story idea made me think of that for some reason.
Humanity has been domesticated by a super-intelligent alien race and bred into several different breeds with wildly varying physical characteristics.
In other words, a post-human universe where humans have been bred as pets, like dogs. Can you imagine a world where the physical differences between humans of different races are as great as this:
Can these two even physically reproduce?
A fantasy where the traveling hero is actually the bad guy.
I think Girl Genius already beat me to that, though Othar is more of an annoyance than a genuine villain.
An interstellar Sir Richard Burton.
Now that would be an interesting series. Sir Richard Burton was a British adventurer who went to the Middle East before doing that was cool. He made the first English translation of the 1001 Arabian Nights (as well as the Kama Sutra, apparently), and was one of the first European explorer to sneak into Mecca–certainly the first non-Muslim explorer. I hear he was quite a character.
A planet on a highly eccentric orbit where habitability is sustained by large glowstones that absorb high amounts of energy and emit heat slowly.
Ooh, I’d forgotten about this one. I’ll have to use it sometime–maybe in a science fiction / fantasy mashup. You know, with dragons and stuff.
A werewolf who is tame around just one person.
I’m pretty sure this one has been done, and I’m also pretty sure I’m not interested in reading it. Sorry, Twilight fans–or maybe you’re welcome?
A landscape more vertical than horizontal, where the architecture reflects this (like the old Knight building).
The Knight building was a multi-split-level administration building at BYU where Leading Edge used to meet. Lots of stairs, entrances on just about every level–it was a weird building (but not quite as weird as the JKB). But yeah, a vertical landscape would be cool–though I guess that’s pretty common in cyberpunk, with all those cities.
An alien species that communicates only by touch.
“What the–augh! Get it off of me!” Thus begins humanity’s first interstellar war.
Purgatory for fictional characters, where all the plot hole stories go.
I’m pretty sure that was a South Park episode.
A religious order that believes that developing math skills is the key to self and enlightenment, becuase math is the only science that is completely a priori.
Heh, I’ll bet my Dad would like that story. It might be the first one of mine that he actually buys.
A man frames himself to go to prison so that he can go to law school / have time to write.
When you’re unemployed and struggling to make ends meet, some otherwise unsavory options begin to look pretty attractive…
What if humanity had a blight like the American Chestnut, where everyone over the age of 20 dies of a horrible disease?
I actually started writing that one. Finished the first chapter, kind of in a pseudo-Victorian first person style, like Robinson Crusoe. I have no idea when I’ll finish it, but the universe is really, really fascinating.
A world where novelists / storytellers convey their tales telepathically without translation into words.
And then SOPA gets passed, and all of us creative types are screwed.
What if the mountains were sentient? What would they think of the human race?
“Dang it! Not another cavity!”
Land of the sleeping rainbows
I think this is actually a real place in southern Utah; I just thought it would make a cool story prompt.
What if the Amish really are 18th century people, guarding a natural time portal in central Pennsylvania?
That would be a fun one to research. “Hello, I’m writing a time travel novel…can I join your village for a year?”
Marital therapy that involves swapping bodies.
I’m pretty sure Disney did something like that in the 60s. With the way the country has changed, I’m sure it would be much different if someone did it again today.
And that just about does it for this notebook. As always, feel free to use any of these ideas in your own work. It isn’t “stealing” if it hasn’t actually been written yet (unless congress passes a revamped version of SOPA that…hmm, that gives me an idea…).
Thanks guys! See you around!