EXAMPLES OF THEMES
Before you look at the examples of themes below it will help you to learn more about what theme is and how it affects our writing and our stories
A story without a theme is little more than a list of events.
The events themselves may be very interesting, or exciting, but without the universal human connection, they will not engage our attention in any real way.
Not only must it appeal to the reader, it must also appeal to you.
You must want to or even need to explore that particular theme for you to keep writing.
Many people tend to confuse the theme of a story with the plot.
To learn about the difference between theme and plot click here.
THE PULSE OF THE STORY
Theme is the pulse of the story and if you choose correctly you will feel compelled (in a good way) to complete your story.
If your theme is not compelling to you, it will certainly not be compelling to your readers.
So think very carefully, not just about your themes but about how you intend exploring them.
EXAMPLES OF THEMES
You might like to choose one of the following examples of themes – that appeals to you and try writing a story about it.
Alienation – The effects of, the loneliness of, to cure it.
Ambition – getting what you want, stunted by, thwarted.
Betrayal – the pain of, in love and friendship.
Coming of age – loss of innocence.
Courage – courage to deal with conflict, lack of, developing, conquering with.
Deception – how to deceive, results of.
Discovery – what does it take to discover new places, inner meaning, strength, even treasure.
Escape – from life, routine, prison, family pressures.
Death – how to escape, facing, what happens after, consequences of.
Fear – driven by, dealing with, conquering.
Freedom – loss of, gaining, handling, fight for.
Good versus evil – survival of one despite the other, the triumph of one over the other.
Isolation – physical and emotional.
Jealousy – trouble caused by, denial of, driven by.
Justice – the fight for, injustice, truth versus justice.
Loss – of life, innocence, love, friends, to avoid.
Loneliness – no man is an island, or hell is other people.
Love – love fades, is blind, can overcome all obstacles, can
Lust – for power, for sex.
Power – the search for, the loss of, what we are willing to exchange for.
Prejudice – racism, bigotry, snobbery, dealing with.
Security – the loss of, the finding of the need for, how we act when security is shattered.
Spirituality and God – the struggle to find faith, live without faith etc.
Survival – man versus nature
CHOOSING YOUR STORY THEME – KEY POINTS
- Give a lot of thought to choosing your story theme. Remember you will need to be obsessed with your chosen theme to keep writing about it for long periods of time.
- Being aware of your themes can help you sell your books.
For help choosing a theme click here.
CHOOSING YOUR APPROACH TO THEME
We all approach our writing ideas differently. My own methods vary from time to time. Sometimes I decide I want to write about a particular theme and then find the story.
At other times I find the story first and the themes become apparent through the process of writing.
Whatever your approach, it is well worth putting some thought into it before you commit yourself to the hard work of writing out the story.
THE IMPORTANCE OF PREPARATION
Undertaking this initial preparation will save you from having to put too many of those unfinished stories in the bottom drawer of the filing cabinet.
I personally put a great deal of thought into my themes and there are some themes, like betrayal, bullying, survival, and loneliness, that resonate with me particularly.
I have explored those several times both in non-fiction and fiction.
BULLYING, JEALOUSY, AND ISOLATION
You can see how I worked with the theme of bullying, jealousy, and isolation in my children’s story ‘The Tree Hugger.’
I really hope these examples of themes help you.
If you have any questions or comments please use the comments box below and I will be happy to help.
Click here for Creative Writing Exercises to help kick-start your writing.
Best of luck with your writing.
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Interesting Personal Essay Ideas
A personal essay gives the reader a glimpse of your personal life experience. A lot of times you may need to compose a personal essay. It could be for a simple class assignment, or the requirement for a college application. In order to gain ideas of writing a personal essay, you can get inspired by the listed topics below. Just think of each of the ideas as a prompt for writing, and imagine any special moment the prompt may bring to your mind.
- How you and your best friend met
- The bravest moment of your life
- What makes your parents special
- The experience of overcoming a fear
- The moment your life changed forever
- Why you can succeed in life
- A difficult choice you have made
- A place that is special to you
- The experience of being let down by a friend
- A failure you experienced
- A disappointment you had
- A surprising turn of events you experienced
- Your favorite period of time
- A place you always try to avoid
- If you had power, what you would do with it
- What super power you choose to have
- If you could change someone’s life
- How money matters for your life
- Where would you go hide
- The biggest loss you have experienced
- If you could have a do-over
- Words that stung
- A book that has changed your life
- When you have the desire of running away
- When you have the urge of hiding in a hole
- The proudest moment of your life
- When you were taught a lesson by a child
- Words that prompted hope
- If your dog or cat could talk
- Your favorite time with family
- If you could invent something
- If you could live in a different country
- What the world would be like in 100 years
- If you lived 100 years ago
- The animal you would like to be
- The greatest movie moment
- One thing you would change about the world
- If you could change one thing about yourself
- The type of teacher you want to be
- If you could live anywhere
- A museum you’d like to visit
- If you could become a building
- Something a robot could never do
- An animal that could be in charge of the world
- The greatest discovery
- Your most fortunate day
- Your secret love
- Your secret talent
- The ugliest thing you have seen
- The most beautiful thing you have seen
- An accident which changed everything
- Something you have witnessed
- A right choice
- A wrong choice
- How you would spend a million dollars
- The meaning of color
- If you could start a charity
- Your favorite gift
- A close call
- A secret place
- A hard lesson
- An unexplained event
- Something you can’t resist
- A visitor that you can’t forget
- The longest moment you ever had
- An awkward social moment
- A near death experience
- The hardest news you had to deliver
- A special morning
- A kiss that meant a lot
- Why you will never tell a lie
- When you needed a hug