i‑Learner Education Centre

Steps to Success » Creative Writing

Jumping from Page to Pen

Have you ever found yourself inspired by a story but too afraid of copying it to write something similar? There are many ways to be inspired by a story without copying it directly. Let’s take a look at a few.

Instead of thinking about the whole story, look for specific details that touch you. If you like a certain character, think about what they experience in the story and carry that into your own scenario. If you like Ron in Harry Potter because he’s not the best in his family but is still confident with who he is, take that character feature into a new story. What would happen if such a person were put among a group of Olympics athletes? Would they still be confident with themselves or strive to be better?

Another change you can make to a story is to imagine the same events happening in a completely different setting. When Little Red Riding Hood is set in a forest, the villain is naturally a Big Bad Wolf. If it took place in a city instead, who would the bad guy be? If Red Riding Hood is visiting her lonely grandmother in the original story, who could she be visiting if she lived on a spaceship?

The key here is not just to change one or two things but to train yourself to adapt and learn how changing one element of the story brings forth other changes. People say you need to walk in another’s shoes to understand their experience and feelings. By adapting stories you love, you can walk in the shoes of characters and settings you admire, which will help you truly understand them. These shoes will bring you further through the adventure of storytelling.