Here are five writing prompts that ask the classic writer’s question, “What if?” Each of these could create hundreds of story lines depending on the writer’s choices. Where would you take it?
What if . . . your brother and his wife are killed in a car accident and you become guardian of the children from hell?
What if . . . a couple of teens steal a car to go joyriding, and it breaks down in the middle of nowhere?
What if . . . the mild-mannered guy three doors down begins stalking you?
What if . . . the sun’s glare through the windshield is blinding you and you hit an elderly man because you can’t see him?
What if . . . a guy is rough-housing at the pool, shoves his friend in unexpectedly, and the friend hits his head and is paralyzed?
Choose one and see where it goes. Was there something surprising? Did you pull on your own experiences? Did it morph into a totally different story?