Four writing prompts: Obsession

Good stories center on the clashing of characters’ goals and motivations. Sometimes a character’s goals and motivations arise from a fixation or mania. Here are four writing prompts for stories that center on obsession.

Man vs. nature
Obsessed with finding a treasure, our main character enters a perilous wilderness where he must fight off nature’s challenges. How do each of the challenges alter him – do they deepen his obsession or cause him to his view of what is important in life to evolve?

Man vs. man
Two men are obsessed with the same woman. Each will do anything to prevent the other from obtaining the woman’s affections (She loves them both.). Which one will be victorious (Perhaps it will be the one who realizes his inner flaw and changes his behavior, which the woman finds uberattractive.)?

Man vs. society
A man who was adopted is obsessed with identifying his biological father/mother. But what if some organization doesn’t want that information to be known? Why not? How much will our main character risk to fulfill his dream…or is it his obsession?

Man vs. himself
What if our protagonist is obsessed with a woman who is seemingly perfect but holds dark secrets? What if he surreptitiously discovers what the secrets are and they’re something he has trouble stomaching? Which wins out – his obsessive love for her or his inability to accept her for what she once did?


My name is Rob Bignell. I’m an affordable, professional editor who runs Inventing Reality Editing Service, which meets the manuscript needs of writers both new and published. I also offer a variety of self-publishing services. During the past decade, I’ve helped more than 300 novelists and nonfiction authors obtain their publishing dreams at reasonable prices. I’m also the author of the 7 Minutes a Day… writing guidebooks, four nonfiction hiking guidebook series, and the literary novel Windmill. Several of my short stories in the literary and science fiction genres also have been published.