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Plot Twist Story Prompts: Magic Trick

Every good story needs a nice (or not so nice) turn or two to keep it interesting. This week, insert a little magic into your story.

Plot twist story prompts aren’t meant for the beginning or the end of stories. Rather, they’re for forcing big and small turns in the anticipated trajectory of a story. This is to make it more interesting for the readers and writers alike.

Each week, I’ll provide a new prompt to help twist your story. Find last week’s prompt, The Rendezvous, here.

Plot Twist Story Prompts: Magic Trick

For today’s prompt, insert a little magic into your story. The magic could be something big like a spell that conjures up a terrifying storm right on the spot or that ends one. Or it could something lower key like a perfect item appearing at the perfect moment without explanation. In fact, the lack of explanation is what really gives magic its power.

Magic is fun for readers, because there is usually no explanation—even if the writer has an elaborate system of magical rules. That lack of explanation creates a space where anything is possible—for good or for evil. In many ways, a magical world is simultaneously filled with more hope and more dread than others.

(5 ways to surprise your reader without it feeling like a trick.)

Of course, the magic itself could be truly magical, or it could be a trick. The fun part for the storyteller is deciding when to use the magic, how often, and then unraveling what it means for all the characters. Does the magic create a positive reaction? A negative reaction? Maybe it’s confounding or humorous. Maybe there is an explanation at the end, but consider the possibility of leaving it up to the readers to debate.

Regardless of how you handle, insert a little magic and observe where it takes you and your characters.


If you want to learn how to write a story, but aren’t quite ready yet to hunker down and write 10,000 words or so a week, this is the course for you. Build Your Novel Scene by Scene will offer you the impetus, the guidance, the support, and the deadline you need to finally stop talking, start writing, and, ultimately, complete that novel you always said you wanted to write.

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