We all know great fiction draws inspiration from real life, so it’s no surprise that some of the best novelists are also accomplished journalists. Jennifer Miller is one of these multifaceted writers. She’s written for publications like The New York Times, The Washington Post, Marie Claire, and Salon.com–and now she’s turned her journo experiences into fiction with her debut novel The Year of the Gadfly, which tells the tale of teen reporter Iris Dupont. But whether she’s writing fiction or non-fiction, Jennifer has a nose for hunting out a good story; today’s prompt inspires you to do the same!
Figment Daily Theme–June 7, 2012
Beat writer’s block by creating fiction out of real-life events. I love to peruse newspapers for bizarre headlines (example: “Professor Targets Iguana Invasion” from the Naples News or “Man Gets 13 Years for Posing as His Dead Mom” from the Wichita Eagle). Once a story grabs your attention, you can use a quote from the article as your story’s first line or make one of the interview subjects your protagonist. You can also use the headline itself as your starting point. Why in the world was the Wichita man posing as his dead mother and how did he do it? How did the professor target the Iguanas? With sling shots or nuclear weapons? Remember that you’re writing fiction–so don’t be afraid to embellish or come up with your own answers to these questions.
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