Ideas for a Science Fiction Story
The Assignment | Ideas for Stories | Peer editing | Grading Rubric

Science Fiction stories are about change. Here are a ton of possible changes.

To make a story, think about how the change might effect children, families, students, working people, the aged, the poor, the very rich, young couples, the world of work, the world of leisure, how people live their lives.

Think about what curses might accompany blessings (eliminate death and you have over population) and what blessings accompany curses (global warming means antarctic beach front property values go up).

Remember that your characters will have motivations: they probably want to be happy, to avoid being hurt, to protect their loved ones, to make a living at the things they enjoy, to love and be loved, to be valued by their friends and society, to be successful, to be better. Some will have extreme motivations: to be the best, to gain power, to get revenge, to destroy, to create, to defend, to get even. Who are the people in your story? What do they want, what stands in the way, and what of value is to be gained or lost?

How does the science fictional premise you build your story around effect who your characters are and what they want?


- What if we discover faster than light travel?
- What if faster than light travel isn't possible, but we still want to go to the stars?
- What if all funding for space travel is eliminated?
- What if we make stronger lighter metals?
- What if we solve world hunger?
- What if we eliminate pollution?
- What if the ozone disappears?
- What if global warming continues?
- What if population keeps growing?
- What if other intelligent life is discovered?
- What if we lived under the oceans?
- What if we create a learning pill?
- What if a meteor crashes into the Earth?
- What if we have settlements in orbiting space stations, on the Moon or on Mars?
- What if you could vacation in space?
- What if Japan or China colonizes the Moon or Mars?
- What if Microsoft or General Motors colonizes the Moon or Mars?
- What if there are no wild animals?
- What if they could tap your brain into an animal's?
- What if they could breed intelligent animals?
- What if they could clone extinct animals?
- What if they could rewire your brain to make you smarter?
- What if immortality was available only to the rich?
- What if we discover a way to conquer gravity?
- What if teleportation becomes possible?


- What if we eliminate aging?
- What if we can totally manipulate the genes?
- What if all diseases are cured?
- What if cancer is eliminated?
- What if a new disease is created?
- What if fertility drugs (and multiple births) are normal?
- What if people are cloned?
- What if the need for sleep was eliminated?
- What if you could build the perfect partner?
- What if AIDS can't be stopped?
- What if a black market in stolen organs for transplants arises?


- What if there was a nuclear war?
- What if soldiers are bred instead of recruited?
- What if robots become the soldiers?
- What if there was a biological or chemical war?
- What if terrorists took over the computers and airways?
- What if there was an alien invasion?
- What if energy weapons are perfected (death beams, lasers, etc.)?
- What if war was eliminated?


- What if all buying was done on line?
- What if computers become a fashion accessory?
- What if computers became self aware?
- What if everything was smart (self-aware pencils, desks, shoes, combs, etc.)
- What if all reading is done on the computer (no books or newspapers)
- What if we could make robotic pets?
- What if we could make humanoid robots to take over undesirable jobs?
- What if computer is always on, always connected, voice controlled and planted in your ear?
- What if children were raised by virtual parents?


- What if one religion conquers the rest?
- What if religion came through our computers?
- What if we eliminated illegal drugs?
- What if all drugs were legal?
- What if all prejudice was eliminated?
- What if big corporations took over governing the world?
- What if the religious right took over the country?
- What if a totally liberal view took over the country?
- What if jails were eliminated?
- What if all crimes were capital ones?
- What if plural marriages become the norm?
- What if all jobs were temporary?
- What if report cards are eliminated and replaced with complete skills descriptions?
- What if the traditional male dominant role in society was reversed?
- What if anyone can know anything about anybody?
- What if education isn't needed because the computers have all the jobs?
- What if all these scientific/medical/computer marvels are only available for the wealthy?

Entertainment and Sports

- What if athletes were genetically enhanced?
- What if football (or some other violent sport) was played to the death?
- What if global politics was determined by sports success?

The Assignment | Ideas for Stories | Peer editing | Grading Rubric

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