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The 500 Words Blog: Let Your Imagination Play

...a collection of 500 Words clips, tips and tricks to ignite your imagination, and get those creative cogs turning.

Finding the SPARK in your story

by Christopher Edge - Word Expert at Oxford University Press - 29/01/2019 - LAUNCH DAY

Every story starts with a spark. This is a spark of inspiration - the beginning of an idea - from which a story can grow. But sometimes when you look down at a blank piece of paper, inspiration can seem a long way away.

So where can you find a story spark?

Keeping your eyes – and ears – peeled can help you to find story inspiration. From the places you visit and the people you meet to newspaper headlines or conversations you overhear on the top deck of the bus, ideas for settings, characters and story plots can be found everywhere. Keep a notebook with you to jot down your ideas whenever inspiration strikes.

Fascinating facts can also spark a story idea. That’s what happened to me when I discovered that bananas are radioactive! From this strange scientific fact, I got the idea of a boy who could use the radioactive power of bananas. This story spark eventually became my novel The Many Worlds of Albie Bright, which tells the story of a boy called Albie who invents an experiment called the Quantum Banana Theory that allows him to travel to parallel universes in search of his mum.

Take a look at the following fascinating science facts:

• A single bolt of lightning contains enough energy to toast 100,000 slices of bread.

• The average person accidentally eats over 400 bugs a year.

• A laser beam can get trapped in a waterfall.

• The octopus has three hearts.

• Snails have thousands of teeth.

What story ideas might these facts spark? Get a blank piece of paper and start writing your story!

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Take a look

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