Brainstorming Topics: 24 Great topics to Get Creativity Flowing

These brainstorming topics are a great place to start if you are looking for a new creative idea for your writing work.

A brainstorming session can be a great way to get new ideas for a blog post, article book, podcast, short story or even a novel. If you’re hoping to get the creative juices flowing or struggle with writer’s block and want to start thinking creatively again, start with brainstorming is the place to start. There are many brainstorming techniques you can use to get the ideas flowing. Some of the more popular ones include:

brainstorming topics
  • Listing or Bulleting
  • Clustering or Mind Mapping
  • Guided Brainstorming
  • Group Brainstorming
  • Brainwriting
  • Rapid Ideation
  • Storyboarding

Sometimes before you can begin brainstorming, you need the right central idea. Use it as a jumping-off point. Our article packed full of brainstorming tips explains more. Here are some brainstorming topics that can start the process. These topics are intentionally vague and open-ended because your mind can take you down many different paths as you explore them.

General Brainstorming Ideas for Those New to Brainstorming

If you are new to brainstorming, here are some ideas to get you started on the activity:

1. Childhood Memories

Childhood is something that has many different subtopics a writer could explore. You could talk about the emotions of childhood, or you could write about the responsibilities of childhood. This is an effective brainstorming starting point because everyone has a childhood. Whether it was a good one or a bad one, this is a universal topic that all writers can write on.

Because this is such a broad topic, you have many different paths you can go down for your brainstorming. Some ideas include vacations you took as a child, favorite toys you had, people who influenced or were important to you as a child.

2. Global Warming

Brainstorming Topics: What do you think about global warming?

Global warming is another broad topic that works well as a brainstorming idea. You can explore your opinion, discuss the human impact on global warming, and discuss its economic, geographic, and political impacts. As you brainstorm this topic, consider potential solutions you find. Add a section to your concept map that discuss solutions. After completing this activity, you will find multiple options to write about with this one broader topic.

3. Impact of Education

Education is another broad topic that can work well for brainwriting activities. You can write about its impact on your life personally or its impacts on society. You can have a subtopic that explores some of the benefits of the right education or the drawbacks of a flawed educational system.

Education also gives you the chance to brainstorm techniques. What works in education, and what doesn’t? What is the role of the teacher and the student in education? The answers to these questions provide much information you can transform into articles and papers.

4. A Social Controversy

Another effective brainstorming technique is to take a current social controversy and make it your central idea. Then, spend time exploring the who, what, where, when, and how surrounding this topic. You can share ideas to solve the issue or explore potential causes, depending on your goal for the activity.

This topic can be effective if you brainstorm ideas for a blog post. You can engage with your audience well when you talk about something important to them, and social controversies tend to fit the bill well. You can also get a lot of engagement when using a hot-button topic like this.

5. The Impact of Pets on Your Life

Pets are something many people feel strongly about. If you have a pet, you know how close you can get to them. Consider using “pets” as the main topic in your freewriting activity, and then branch off with the different subtopics.

You can explore many things with this topic. For instance, you can look at the emotions you feel about your pet or have a subtopic that explores pet care concerns. You can talk about ethics and costs, as well.

6. Write About A Particular Culture

Is there a culture you would like to learn about or know quite a bit about and would like to study further? This can be a great brainstorming topic. Start with the culture as your central idea, and then brainstorm facts about it.

What influences have you seen on the culture? What are some facts about it that are worth exploring? How has the culture changed? These are the ideas that can create the subtopics for your brainstorming session.

Brainstorming Topics for Students

These ideas might get you started by brainstorming a topic for a research paper or essay.

7. Your Favorite Historical Character

Is there someone from history that you enjoy studying? This could be your brainstorming topic. Put that character as your central topic, and then brainstorm and map about them.

You’ll find quite a few paths to follow with this idea. Start with biographical information as one branch of your mind map, then move to impact and political or societal views for additional branches. As you dig into the research, add even more to the map until you have a full picture of who they are and how they impacted society.

8. Science

Do you have a passion for weather or physics, or chemistry? Pick a science-related topic, and build that into your brainstorming session. You can delve deep into various aspects of the topic as you brainstorm.

This brainstorming topic works well if you need to write an academic paper. It also works if you are just interested in the topic in general.

9. Great Literature

A final idea for brainstorming topics is to look more closely at a particular piece of literature. Place the work’s title at the center of your concept map, then build branches to talk about characters, setting, and plot. You can also explore alternate endings to get some creative writing in.

If you write your work, you can use this idea to get your creativity flowing. Place the title or main plot point in the center of your graph, and start brainstorming. For some inspiration, read our guide to classic literature books.

10. Enterpreneurship and Innovation

The vibrant world of entrepreneurship and innovation has its unique allure. Students might entertain the creation of community-centric business models. Additionally, they could weigh in on how budding entrepreneurs are poised to redefine tomorrow.

History, with its tapestry of events and figures, offers a treasure trove of topics. Imagine if key historical events had taken a different turn? Or how about delving into the lives and legacies of influential leaders?

Brainstorming Strategies for Marketing Professionals

Brainstorming in the professional environment happens all the time. Some of the best ideas come from group brainstorming sessions. If you need help getting started, rather than taking on a topic, consider one of these activities:

11. A Bad Idea

If you’re looking for the next great idea with your group, consider listing the bad ideas first. This gives you room to state an idea that you think is bad, but it might actually be good, but it also lets you get all of your creativity out. Often, you will find some gems even within those ideas you think are bad. 

Remember, brainstorming aims to get all of the topics out. Some won’t be important to your writing or your project, but stating them is a good starting point. If you’re brainstorming in a group, letting them state their bad ideas first is a good way to break the ice and make people feel less inhibited about sharing their real ideas.

12. One Big Idea

In marketing, you often start with a big idea or promotion, but you need to find a way to get that idea or promotion into the minds and eyes of your target audience. You can use a brainstorming session to do this.

Start with your big idea as the central point. Then, have you or your team break it down into smaller parts. Soon you will come up with different avenues you can tap as you work towards reaching your audience with your main marketing message. 

Brainstorming Topics for Creatives

If you are creative in any industry, you know the frustration when your ideas run dry. Here are some brainstorming topics and ideas that can get your creativity flowing again.

13. A Mood Board

Brainstorming Topics: Create a mood board
Create a board where you can brainstorm about a particular mood

The mood of the creator inspires much creativity. Create a board where you can brainstorm about a particular mood. For instance, you can add adjectives, images, and colors you associate with that mood. 

Make this brainstorming activity highly visual—the more visual, the better. With the images and ideas on your board, you will have a starting point for your creative work.

14. An Inspiring Image

Whether it is something from nature or a classic artwork, find an inspiring image to start your brainstorming session. Put the image, rather than a word, at the center of your mind map or brainstorming flow chart. Then, build ideas from it.

You may find inspiration for a work of fiction in this way or an idea for your piece of art. Using the beauty around you can easily inspire your creative side if you spend a little time thinking about what you see. 

Brainstorming topics for Writing

Deciding what you want to write about next and exploring your ideas is ripe for brainstorming. But sometimes, it helps to be more specific. Try these brainstorming topics for writing:

15. Memoir and Personal Experience

Diving into the depths of personal experiences, memoirs present a rich tapestry of emotions and events. Writers can explore pivotal moments that drastically changed the course of their lives. Alternatively, they could unravel an unexpected encounter with a stranger that left an indelible mark on their psyche. Venturing into the realm of dreams, one might pen down the most vivid and bewildering dream they’ve ever had, weaving it with real-life implications and interpretations. Read our guide to the best memoirists.

16. Fantasy and World-Building 

Consider a universe where shadows take on their own lives, having untold secrets and tales. Or, delve into the intricacies of a mystical tribe just discovered, detailing their rituals, customs, and magical practices. You could brainstorm about the intriguing concept of a common creature, perhaps something as humble as a rabbit or a butterfly, suddenly gaining unprecedented power and upending the established order. Read our guide to the best fantasy books.

17. Sci-fi 

Science fiction propels readers into the unknown, pushing the boundaries of current understanding. Envision Earth’s transformation after establishing contact with an extraterrestrial civilization. Brainstorm about what if time travel became possible? Dive into the moral dilemmas and societal changes such a breakthrough might entail. In a more abstract vein, imagine a dystopian future where raw emotions become commodities, traded and sold amongst individuals. 

18. Historical Fiction

History is always a good muse for writers. Imagine a clandestine romance blossoming amidst the vibrant backdrop of the Renaissance. Or, brainstorm the inner turmoil of a soldier caught in the crossfires of a devastating historical war. Through the eyes of a commoner, writers can also capture the essence of a major city during a significant historical event, blending factual events with fictional flourishes.

19. Horror and Thriller

Picture a quaint town with a chilling secret: every resident inexplicably goes mute for one day each year. Or, delve into the consequences that unfurl when someone stumbles upon an old tome with the sinister power to control minds. Adding a touch of mystery, brainstorm a detective’s harrowing journey as they become obsessed with a crime that evidence suggests might never have happened. Read our guide to the best horror authors.

20 Romance and Relationships

Romance, with its myriad of emotions, offers vast narrative possibilities. Think of a heart-wrenching love story where two souls from parallel universes cross paths. Reflect on the challenges and bittersweet moments of a love story set in a world where humans only live for 30 years. Or, brainstorm a tale of two bibliophiles who, over time, fall in love through letters secretively left within the pages of a shared library book.

21. Mystery and Suspense

Mysteries have an innate allure, drawing readers into their web of intrigue. What could be the hidden story behind a series of anonymous gifts a woman receives every spring? Upon noticing the peculiar habits of a town’s residents, a journalist could embark on a quest for truth, revealing dark secrets. Alternatively, writers can craft a suspense-filled narrative about passengers on a stranded train, discovering unexpected ties that bind them together.

22. Adventure and Exploration

Adventures, with their thrill and unpredictability, make for captivating tales. Brainstorm the perilous journey of adventurers on a quest to discover a mythical city built entirely of gold. Dive into a child’s exhilarating escapade in a world that comes to life within a painting, complete with challenges and allies. Or, delve deep underwater, following explorers as they navigate an uncharted cave system’s dark, beautiful corridors.

23. Dystopian And Satire

The dystopian genre pushes writers to consider stark, often bleak, versions of the future. Brainstorm a tightly controlled society where memories are archived and any undesirable ones can be selectively erased. In stark contrast, picture a world reclaimed by nature, where humanity’s remnants grapple with survival. Or, peer into the daily lives of individuals residing under a massive dome after Earth’s atmosphere turns deadly. Read our guide to the best satire authors

24. Philosophical and Thought-Provoking

For those seeking deeper introspection, philosophical themes can be a goldmine. Contemplate on the very essence of human nature by exploring whether true altruism exists. Envision a society sculpted by the impossibility of deceit, where every spoken word is the absolute truth. Or, in a poignant narrative twist, imagine the intricacies of living in a world where everyone knows their exact date of death from the moment they’re born. Read our guide to the best philosophy books.

For more brainstorming ideas, check out our round-up of the best software for brainstorming.

Author

  • Nicole Harms has been writing professionally since 2006. She specializes in education content and real estate writing but enjoys a wide gamut of topics. Her goal is to connect with the reader in an engaging, but informative way. Her work has been featured on USA Today, and she ghostwrites for many high-profile companies. As a former teacher, she is passionate about both research and grammar, giving her clients the quality they demand in today's online marketing world.