The Concept

By Kristen
Updated July 28, 2007

What's a Concept

A concept is what the story is basically about (e.g. a man who starts a business despite not having any experience, education, or support).

Making Your Concept Fit Your Premise

Sometimes you'll have a concept before you have a premise, and from your concept you can usually come up with a premise. On the other hand, sometimes you'll have a premise before you have a concept.

If you don't already have a concept, then make a concept to fit your premise.  Perhaps your premise is that you should never assume that something is impossible because you could be wrong. What is something that seems impossible? (Here is where you brainstorm.) The idea that Santa Clause is a real person who flies from house to house on the night before Christmas and gives out gifts to children seems impossible, so let's go with that. Now imagine that you are a little kid, making up a lie to prove to your friends that this theory is true.

"A friend of a friend says that Santa Clause lives next door to him, and he just pretends to be a normal person, so he can live in the suburbs during the summer because he got tired of living at the North Pole because the elves started listening to rap music while they work, and Santa can't stand rap music, and ..."

Suddenly, you have a concept.