Story Ideas about Difficult Decisions

Here are story ideas about characters facing difficult decisions. At the bottom of the page, you'll find links to hundreds of other creative writing prompts.

1) In a typical romance story, the character often has to choose between Mr. Right and Mr. Wrong (or Miss Right and Miss Wrong). But it sometimes more interesting if the character has two seemingly good choices -- Mr. Right versus Mr. Right. Your character is in this situation. Two men, or two women, are both interested in your character. Both of these romantic prospects are extremely attractive, though in different ways. Each of these people fulfills different needs and desires of your character. How will your character decide?

2) Your character suspects that someone close to him/her is about to commit a terrible crime. Will your character report this suspicion to the authorities? If the suspicion is correct, your character could prevent people from getting hurt. But if your character's wrong, s/he could get someone s/he cares about into serious trouble.

3) Your character is approached by a stranger, who offers your character money for spying on your character's boss. Your character immediately refuses, both for ethical reasons and because your character loves his or her job. But the stranger won't take no for an answer. And he has a photograph that could destroy your character's life (you decide what the photograph shows). Either your character cooperates, or the stranger will use the photograph against him/her.

4) Your character is asked on a date by someone very attractive. Unfortunately, your character is aware that his/her best friend is secretly in love with this person. If your character gets involved with him or her, it will likely destroy the friendship. But it's so tempting...

5) Your character's sister dies in an accident, and your character is asked to adopt the sister's young child. Your character loves this child and wants to adopt him. The problem is that your character's husband or wife absolutely doesn't want children. Your character has to choose between the child and his/her marriage.


Make both options really appealing or truly terrible. If your character starts leaning toward a particular option too quickly, find a way to make the decision harder.

For example, let's say you're writing a story about Ellen, who has to choose between a job and a relationship. If Ellen clearly cares more about the relationship, you can have her boss offer her a raise and a promotion. Give Ellen a financial problem, so that she really needs the money.

Now Ellen is leaning toward the job. So have her boyfriend propose marriage. Now she's unsure again. By shifting the advantage from one side to the other, you keep the reader off-balance -- and in suspense.

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