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Writing Tips

Simple Creative Writing Story Bible Template & Checklist

Creative writing contains an expanse of distinctive characters, glowing worlds, and thrilling one-of-a-kind journeys. All of these various factors come together to envelop you in an imaginary world, and it’s pretty amazing. However, building a world, whether in a novel, movie, tv-show, whatever, is a lot. It’s a lot of detail and information which needs to be remembered and tracked for years. 

A story bible is a way to combine all the vital information and details of the world and characters you write and keep it ordered, organized, and ready to reference. 

Keep reading to find out how to purchase the story bible template and checklist I’ve created to help your life as a writer a little easier. (You can also download only the list for free–link below!)

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Get your own story bible template and checklist below!

story bible template and checklist image with link to product on Etsy

What’s a Story Bible?

With everything that goes into writing a book, you need to keep things organized and consistent. A story bible is basically a document containing all of the details of your story’s world so you can easily find relevant information.

There’s no right or wrong way to create a story bible, no specific length, details, none of that. Everything in your document can and should be tailored specifically to your story and the world you’ve created.

That being said, creating such a document from scratch can be daunting, so starting with a template is super helpful. With a template, you can ensure you write down all the crucial details from your story, but you can always add to it later to include more story-specific details.

How Can a Story Bible Help My Creative Writing?

The main reason to create a story bible is for consistency and ease. When writing, you can look at small but significant details instead of flipping through pages and pages of your draft to find that one sentence.

Even still, there are more reasons to create some sort of document containing your story’s details. Here are a few of them:

Reminisce

Years of drafting, shaping, and perfecting a novel are nothing shy of incredible. To take a blank page and turn it into 50,000, even 100,000 pages full of excitement, involves so much dedication and commitment. You should be proud of completing a story, no matter how short or long it is. And, what better way to commemorate such a feat than to be able to look back on how it all came together.

Having a story bible is a way to document the progress and change your story undergoes, and you’ll be amazed at what has come of your work. So, if you’re not at all worried about consistency, you may still want a story bible for sentimental purposes.

Collaboration

Writing pretty much always requires some type of collaboration. That might be in the form of a co-writer, an editor, or even just someone giving you feedback.

Collaboration can become complicated when turning your novel into something like a script or video game, so you’ll most definitely need some way to convey what you want for your story in terms of tone, theme, etc., to someone else.

With a story bible, you’ll not only be able to more easily explain the plot, characters, and world of your story, but you’ll also be able to give examples, references, and everything that will help present a clearer image of your writing.

Okay, so I know what a story bible is and how it can help, but what should I be keeping track of?

Well, don’t you worry, I’ll give you a quick run-down of the most important details to remember.

What Should I Track?

When it comes to what should be included, it’s pretty variable. Depending on how complex and unique your story’s world takes place in, you may have your own sections.

If you’re writing a young adult novel, you won’t need detailed information on the world your story takes place in since it’s our world. But, if you have a fantasy story with witches and wizards and mythical creatures, you’ll need way more sections.

You might want to include some background history on the world, such as a great war that has led to a divide of witches and wizards. Or, you may want to document what each species is capable of (like only witches born on a leap year have magical abilities). The more information you can write and the more detailed you can be, the better.

The main things to track that all stories need are:

  • characters (appearance, personality)
  • locations (protagonist’s house, a battlefield)
  • rules (for fantasy and science fiction especially)

For a more detailed explanation of each section, you can purchase my template and checklist bundle. This includes a complete list of sections for your story bible and a template laying each section out.

Get your own story bible template and checklist below!

story bible template and checklist image with link to product on Etsy

If you just want the checklist to create a story bible from scratch, you can download that for free!

story bible checklist download image

I hope this post helps you to understand better what a story bible is, how it can help your writing, and how to create one. Please don’t hesitate to leave any questions below, or feel free to message me on Instagram or Pinterest.

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