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, Falsely Accused, here.
Plot Twist Story Prompts: Cross the Threshold
For today's prompt, a character must cross a threshold. My nine-year-old daughter inspired this prompt when she remarked recently that characters in many of her movies and shows have a moment when they have to enter a little door (think Coraline or Alice in Wonderland). The character must cross a literally threshold to enter a whole new phase (or world) of the story.
Not every threshold is a "little door." In the Chronicles of Narnia, it is a wardrobe, while the Harry Potter series uses chimneys, phone booths, and even public toilets as thresholds. Entering a forbidden forest or haunted house could be considered a threshold. For some characters, a threshold may be traveling beyond a city that was previously their furthest trip from home.
That's part of the value of a crossing the threshold plot twist: The character is forced into a new place they've never experienced before. This means they're likely to come across situations that may leave them with wonder, curiosity, disgust, and/or fear. With a simple act of movement, the stakes of the story are raised.
So lead your characters to a threshold and let them walk through to the other side. You and your readers are bound to enjoy the results.
Have you hit a wall on your work-in-progress? Maybe you know where you want your characters to end up, but don’t know how to get them there. Or, the story feels a little stale but you still believe in it. Adding a plot twist might be just the solution.