Written by Sarah Yoon (FireStarters Sneak Peek)

Looking for ways to hone your creativity this year? Give this writing prompt from our upcoming book, FireStarters, a try! FireStarters is all about inspiration, the differing creative types, and how to harness your particular creative energy to generate your best ideas. 

Intimidated by all the decisions required in storytelling? So many nuanced variables demand your attention, yet you can’t afford to be indecisive. If your creativity is jammed by performance anxiety, distance yourself from any projects that make your shoulders knot. Instead, go to a masseuse and ditch the decision-making. Let your friends do it for you. Write a “pick your own adventure,” limiting yourself to one page for each turning point, and test it out on your personal pack of lab rats.

1. Determine if your story will have one correct path, with riddles or hints helping your reader along, or if it will have alternative storylines.

2. Write a one-page launch for your first chapter. Close it with a high-stakes turning point and thee options for continuing the story. Add one page for each option.

3. Correct choices can multiply as you split threads and create alternate stories. How many threads you allow is up to you.

4. Incorrect choices can end with a decapitating finis or you can embed your reader in a deadly maze of doomed story threads.

5. Tie off each thread and test the story on your group. If you want feedback, give them a pad of paper and have them note their choices.

Streamline the experience by embedding links into a PDF or use Word Doc headers. The headers will show up in a sidebar, making each option visible to the reader, so use numbers instead of descriptive headers to avoid spoilers.