Posted in Starts

The What If…

On March 8, 2022 I wrote an article for this blog on starting your story/book/novel. Well, that was a general overview of starting your writing journey. Here in this article I am going to be more specific. There are many ways in which one can start a story. One way I’m going to touch on today is the ‘what if’ statement.

Let’s say you want to write a story but you don’t know where to begin. Start with a ‘what if’ statement. It doesn’t have to be complex; it just needs to catch attention.


  • What if a girl is at the beach with her friends and finds a locket dated from the early 1900’s, and on the inside is a photo of her great grandmother and another man who is not the girl’s great grandfather.
  • What if a young man (in his 20’s) is at work and receives a message that his wife has fallen ill, but the thing is he has no wife.
  • What if three male friends are walking in the woods taking a short cut to another friend’s house. On the way only two of them are carrying on a conversation while the third friend stays silent and listening. One of the other two turn to the third to get his opinion on something only to find he’s not there.
  • What if a man in his thirties who lives in an apartment steps out and is on his way down the hall to go out to his car but stops short at the open door to his neighbor’s apartment. There’s blood on the threshold and on the arm of the couch just to the left of the open door.
  • What if an uninvited stranger walks into your party, singles you out, and tells you, “He’s here.” But you don’t know who ‘he’ is.

Feel free to steal the above ideas. Maybe one of these will help you come up with a ‘what if’ of your own. Have fun with them. The idea is to create a ‘what if’ statement that creates questions. Once you have a ‘what if’ statement you want to use, continue building on it. You’d be surprised how your mind will start spewing out idea after idea that will expand on that one ‘what if’ statement.


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