10 Historical Fiction Writing Prompts

Historical Writing Prompts including dialogue, story starters, and plot ideas.

Writing different periods in history can be a very creative and interesting experience. From writing about wars, plagues, revolutions, or the 1960s, history offers a lot of locations, characters, and situations that make for great writing material.

So, we put together 10 prompts set in different periods of history to help inspire some writing

  1. “And then the guy walked into the ba–” his joke was cut off by the sound of an approaching German tank.  
  2. “I thought you said, ‘Cut off their heads!'” “No, I said, ‘Cut the bread!'”
  3. My dad got the news about the crash during dinner and I realized this would be my last good meal for a while.
  4. It was 1963 and I was about to take the trip of a lifetime.
  5. I felt the sweat slowly run down my neck as I readied my gun for my third standoff that morning. I really need to make new friends.
the big picture writing prompts
  1. Your protagonist has been sitting behind the wheel of their car for hours in bumper to bumper traffic. They aren’t mad, though, as they are on their way to what will become the most talked about music festival in history — Woodstock.
  2. Two male students, a milkshake, and a diner in the 1950s.
  3. The Bubonic Plague is in full swing and you are the new plague doctor in town. The townfolk call you Dr. Beak because of the protective costume you wear.
  4. It’s 1882, your protagonist is viewing an opera she has seen many times before. She picks up her binoculars to look at the crowd. That’s when she notices the man in black.
  5. Your protagonist has fought in every major war since the Revolution and can’t seem to die.

Did you find these prompts useful? If so, which one is your favourite? Stay tuned here for more prompts.

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