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Story Prompts: In the Woods

Looking for some writing inspiration? We put together a list of 15 fun prompts for stories that take place in the forest!

  1. Person A tumbles into a ravine and gets badly hurt. Person B is the very annoyed dryad whose tree they damaged on their way down and who has zero comprehension that what, for a dryad, would not be a serious wound, actually endangers Person A.
  2. Person A, B, C, and however many more you want involved, are druids…except for Person Z, who thinks they are participating in a LARP.
  3. Person A chains themselves to a tree to protest climate change, only to discover that Person B has chained themselves to the tree next to theirs to protest logging. Both think the other has their priorities entirely wrong, but as they’re forced to co-exist, they start to talk…
  4. Person A and Person B are rival entomologists in search of a living sample of an extremely rare beetle. They develop a deep enmity, and single-mindedly pursue the only beetle either of them has found into a cave…and then an earthquake traps them together.
  5. Person A is an experienced hiker who has tackled a difficult trail, equipped for the challenge. They don’t expect, miles into the wild, to meet Person B, who is definitely not an experienced hiker. Person B’s clothes are in tatters and they’re half-crazed with thirst and hunger. Person A decides to get them back to safety, not knowing that Person B is hiding a chilling secret.
  6. Person A is the child of someone prominent and has been kidnapped. They manage to escape and flee into the woods, and while they’re running they encounter a large circle of mushrooms. No sooner do they step foot within it that they collide with Person B…who wasn’t there a moment before. Person B claims to have been abducted by fairies over 100 years ago, and Person A has mixed feelings about their credibility, but can’t deny some weird things are starting to happen.
  7. Person A carves their initials into an ancient oak tree, unaware that Person B is a tree spirit that resides in the oak…nor do they know, until it’s too late, that carving initials into a tree inhabited by a spirit bonds a person to the spirit.
  8. Person A has been looking forward to their AirBnB cabin getaway for months, only to arrive and find that the cabin is not merely double booked, but triple booked…and neither Person B nor Person C have the least interest in leaving.
  9. Person A is convinced that supernatural entities exist, despite Person B’s insistence that they’re being ridiculous. Unconvinced, Person A swears they hear wolf howls in the forest only during the full moon, and so Person B is pushed into taking them to the woods as the next full moon rises to try to convince them they’ve heard no such thing…except Person B is the werewolf.
  10. Person A and Person B encounter each other every day when they go down the same road into the woods. The forest is vast, and each is convinced the other is going in there for the same reason…it’s not until they’ve struck up a close friendship that they discover that Person A is an ecoterrorist and Person B is an exasperated logger just trying to do their job.
  11. Person A is lost deep in the woods. Terrified, they pray for guidance, but things keep going wrong and their situations gets worse and worse. Person B is the extremely frustrated God who can’t figure out why nothing they do is successfully communicating to Person A what they should be doing to get un-lost.
  12. Person A is the first human to take up residence on a large tract of virgin forestland. They try to live in harmony with nature – taking up residence in a cave, bathing in a pristine stream, gathering sustenance from local flora, that kind of thing. Person B is the spirit of the cave. Person C is the naiad who lives in the stream. Person D is the (sentient) deer who is frustrated that their favorite berry bush keeps getting denuded of berries. Neither B, C, nor D has ever seen a human before, and each assumes that one of the others is behind the changes in their environment.
  13. Person A is a park ranger who tells all the visitors to the state park that the forest is definitely not haunted, despite the battle that took place there hundreds of years ago. Person B is the ghost that Person A has fallen in love with.
  14. Person A, B, C, and however many more you want involved, are LARPers…except for Person Z, who is a druid.Person A and Person B are in an established relationship and on a hike together. Person A insists they don’t need a map, and refuses to even photograph the guide with their cell phone, because they never get lost. Person B is full of increasingly exasperated “I told you so’s” until they start marking their progress on trees, and they carefully walk in a straight line forward…and still somehow end up circling back to where they started.

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