I love a book that sets me laughing in the aisles of a bookstore. Recently, I had that experience with Jay Sacher’s The Amazing Story Generator: Creates Thousands of Writing Prompts.
The story generator’s pages are divided in thirds, to be mixed and matched at will. The top third sets up a situation like “Upon winning the lottery” or “In a post-apocalyptic world.” The middle sections list characters: “a big time weather reporter” “a gossip columnist,” “a 400 year old vampire.” The bottom sections puts the characters in situations, “is transported into another galaxy,” “is trapped in an abandoned gold mine,” or “grows and extra arm,” “goes on a blind date.” By flipping the pages, possible stories emerge—some silly, some intriguing. Want to see how it works?
Clearly The Amazing Story Generator could spark any number of interesting writing assignments, or discussion of the elements of story structure. It also could provide inspiration for individual or class story generators. Imagine having students create their own story generators, with characters and settings they find fascinating. Pokémon characters? Zombies? Historical figures? Students could use their own story generators, or perhaps swap them with friends. I’d love to hear about some examples!