Generating Ideas for Writing - The Gold Rush Phenomenon

Good story ideas come to me all of the time now, just while I'm encountering things throughout the day. My uncle John also sent me an idea that is very versatile, almost begging for expansion, and I keep going back and thinking about it. Returning to an idea is the definition of fascinating, and that is a good lead to follow.


The idea concerns a modern gold rush. It is currently possible, in our world, the real world, to turn lead into gold. It just happens to cost more than the gold is worth to do it. What if it became economically viable? What if someone had this secret and didn't release it, they just made gold for themselves? That reminds me a little bit of "Prison Break" with all of the amazing technology that people are willing to do anything to control. "Prison Break" was an amazing show, too bad it continually got more melodramatic with everyone coming back from the dead, and the entire world revolving around one family. Anyway, you can see there are a lot of story possibilities in the science fiction realm.

You could also take this idea in a fantasy direction. There are rich source materials available in this direction because of the long history of alchemy. Maybe Isaac Newton actually discovered how to make it, but the secret has been hidden by a secret society for all of this time, and now it is about to be used by an evil genius that stole it to disrupt world economies. Something like that could possibly work because Newton was into alchemy, but it sounds a little melodramatic to me in the style of Dan Brown. Of course fantasy involving wizards, witches, and other magical creatures that can transform other materials into gold is a rich source of stories. There could even be something involving a rainbow at some point if you wanted to go in the direction of leprechauns, the options are legion.

There are also a lot of options when it comes to historical gold rushes. The California gold rush may be the most famous, but there have been hundreds all over the world. Africa could be a good setting for a gold rush story anywhere in the last few thousand years. The movie "Gold," which is very good, is based on a little fake gold rush somewhere in Asia. It is presented in a unique and contemporary way, and based on a true story, and a great movie. The idea of a mania, or gold fever, can be expanded into other areas very easily; such as diamonds, tulips, or oil.

Crypto-currencies have some of the same phenomenon around them. Anything that seems like easy money where you can just go grab it has that same possibility. A crypto-currency based story could very easily get into the court room battles, or corporate espionage, spying, and hacking.

You can easily bend the idea of a gold rush in any direction you want. It can be the main story, or a good background for a romance, or a coming of age story.

It is definitely an idea I want to keep in mind. I am sure I will write something about it in the future. You are welcome to join me at JeffreyAlexanderMartin.com

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