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100 Epic Journey Story Prompts

Looking to write an epic journey full of action, adventure, and scope but need some help conjuring fresh concepts? Start here!
by Ken Miyamoto on March 13, 2024

The epic journey—a story involving a hero or protagonist tasked with venturing into different lands, worlds, times, and universes—is as old as time itself. From Homer’s epic journey in The Odyssey to Luke Skywalker’s venture into the stars in Star Wars, the epic journey has always served as one of our greatest forms of storytelling. 

An epic journey is a metaphor for the journeys of conflict we face in life, both physical (external) and emotional (internal). Stories like these act as escapism, where we can live adventures vicariously through the eyes and experiences of the characters. And they also manage to challenge characters the most, which offers an even more cathartic and enticing experience for the reader or audience. 

The more epic the journey, the more conflict that the characters need to face. And conflict is the driving force of any story—big or small.

With that said, here we offer 100 epic journey prompts to get your creative juices flowing! 

Note: Because we’re all connected to the same pop culture, news headlines, and inspirations, any similarity to any past, present, or future screenplays, novels, short stories, television pilots, television series, plays, or any other creative works is purely coincidence.

Read More: Exploring the 12 Stages of the Hero’s Journey

Luke Skywalker (Mark Hamill) carrying Yoda on his back in 'Star Wars: Episode V The Empire Strikes Back,' 100 Epic Journey Story Prompts

'Star Wars: Episode V The Empire Strikes Back' (1980)

100 Epic Journey Story Prompts

  1. A time traveler must venture through time to find a villain.
  2. A forgotten map leads characters through magical doorways, each transporting them to a different fantastical realm.
  3. A Steampunk airship captain embarks on a daring expedition to find the mythical floating city hidden among the clouds.
  4. The last astronaut on Earth must save all of mankind in the last spaceship.
  5. A lone warrior searches the world for a long-lost magical sword.
  6. An archaeologist uncovers a portal in an ancient ruin that transports them to the time of the dinosaurs.
  7. An archaeologist uncovers a portal in an ancient ruin that transports them to the time of the Egyptians. 
  8. An archaeologist uncovers a portal in an ancient ruin that transports them to the Medieval Ages. 
  9. An archaeologist uncovers a portal in an ancient ruin that transports them into the future.
  10. In a post-apocalyptic wasteland, a group of survivors stumbles upon a hidden gateway leading to an untouched, flourishing oasis.
  11. A scientist creates a time loop that forces them to relive the same epic journey across parallel dimensions until they can set things right.
  12. A spacefaring nomad encounters a sentient nebula leading to parallel universes.
  13. A hero must navigate the surreal landscapes of the dreams to restore balance to the waking realm.
  14. A librarian discovers that books in a magical library can open portals to fantasy worlds. 
  15. A librarian discovers that books in a magical library can open portals to historical events.
  16. A librarian discovers that books within a magical library can open portals to futuristic landscapes. 
  17. A librarian discovers that books within a magical library can open portals to alien worlds.
  18. A group of astronauts crash-lands on an alien planet.
  19. A mission sends a time-traveling assassin to manipulate key events in different historical periods to alter the course of history.
  20. Middle school friends discover a magical book that can open portals to a different world.
  21. Middle school friends discover a magical book that can open portals to a parallel universe within their school. 
  22. An underwater explorer stumbles upon an aquatic realm.
  23. A time-traveling detective chases a criminal through different eras.
  24. An astronaut goes through a wormhole and discovers a planet with floating islands.
  25. A pair of siblings discover a hidden doorway in their basement that transports them to an alternative universe.
  26. An Old West wagon train strives to survive the open range.
  27. A gamer must seek the way out of the virtual world where they are trapped.
  28. A ship, its crew, and its captain decide to take the same route as Columbus. 
  29. A ship, its crew, and its captain decide to cover every point of the Bermuda Triangle. 
  30. An astronaut on a routine space mission is plunged into a parallel universe.
  31. A group of survivors in a post-nuclear world try to make it to an island.
  32. A sled dog team tries to keep their master alive as they journey through a winter storm.
  33. A pirate ship, its crew, and its captain try to track down a royal ship full of gold.
  34. A baseball team in a post-nuclear world travels the country to provide entertainment and hope for survivors. 
  35. A terminally ill father and his son embark on a road trip across the country. 
  36. A presidential candidate in a post-apocalyptic world travels the country to earn votes.
  37. A dog is reincarnated as a puppy, remembering their past life, and tries to get back home.
  38. A group of spelunkers finds a long-lost world. 
  39. A group of spelunkers finds proof of a very different past. 
  40. A group of friends tubing on a river gets lost in the Everglades.
  41. A group of friends tubing on a river are transported to the world of dinosaurs.
  42. An artist attains the ability to venture into their paintings of surreal landscapes. 
  43. A museum employee discovers they can enter into the world of iconic paintings.
  44. A time-traveling botanist explores different epochs to collect samples of extinct plants, hoping to revive a lost ecosystem in a world ravaged by environmental disasters.
  45. A young dinosaur is transported to the future through a strange portal. 
  46. An interdimensional bounty hunter tracks down dimension-traveling fugitives.
  47. A time-traveling bounty hunter tracks down time-traveling fugitives.
  48. A spaceship pilot discovers a wormhole that leads to an alien galaxy.
  49. The discovery of the Hawaiian Islands. 
  50. The first space flight to Mars.
  51. The first expedition to the dark side of the moon.
  52. A young character can explore the world of their dreams.
  53. Young friends discover they can meet up and explore the worlds of their dreams. 
  54. A detective must travel through different time periods to solve a case.
  55. A group of explorers discovers a forgotten jungle where dinosaurs never went extinct.
  56. Young siblings find a series of caves behind their grandparents’ old mansion. 
  57. A spacefaring cartographer maps out uncharted territories in space.
  58. Two young siblings walk the burnt landscapes of a post-nuclear world. 
  59. A widow decides to travel to all the places she and her husband never were able to visit.
  60. A stranded astronaut on the moon, thought to be dead, must try to find a way to tell Earth that they are alive.
  61. A young baseball player joins a traveling baseball team and comes of age.
  62. Young lovers meet on a backpacking trip across Asia. 
  63. A plane crashes, and the crew must find their way home.
  64. An ant gets a glimpse of the larger world around their habitat and wants to go explore.
  65. A knight must travel across the land to find the princess he’s tasked with rescuing.
  66. A character dies, and their ghost must find their way through purgatory.
  67. An alien receives a message from Earth and strives to find a way to get there.
  68. Disneyland’s rides are portals into the real worlds they depict.
  69. Characters must find their way out of a seemingly endless haunted mansion.
  70. An expedition through the Rocky Mountains. 
  71. An explorer sails along the coast of the Americas to create the first map of the continent.
  72. Mark Twain’s adventures down the Mississippi. 
  73. A group of kayakers decide to kayak down the Mississippi. 
  74. A group of tubers decide to tube down the Mississippi. 
  75. A journey to the Earth’s core.
  76. A journey to the bottom of the ocean.
  77. Grade school friends decide to climb to the top of a local bluff. 
  78. A man loses his dog and tries to track it through the GPS chip.
  79. A boy and his dog are separated when their canoe tips over in a raging river, and they struggle to find each other.
  80. A time traveler from the future is stuck in the past and must find a way back home. 
  81. Characters struggle to find a military bunker before nuclear missiles hit their country. 
  82. A Navy ship is lost in time and must find the portal back home. 
  83. Characters find a real-life bean stock leading up to a world of giants.
  84. The first Westerner expedition of the Amazon. 
  85. A plane crash-lands in the Amazon Jungle, and the survivors struggle to find their way out. 
  86. A man is given the chance to save his family from death by finding them in the afterlife. 
  87. Technology allows people to explore the minds of people to save them from dementia.
  88. A veteran NFL quarterback is traded from team to team until they find a team they can win the Superbowl with.
  89. Old West cowboys must move their herd across the frontier while they face the elements and other threats. 
  90. A contemporary retelling of The Odyssey.
  91. A character discovers their adoption and now must travel to another country to find their birth parents.
  92. During a hiking trip in the mountains, the family accidentally leaves a child behind, and the child must survive the elements until they find them.
  93. A child runs away from their Midwestern home to find Santa.
  94. A character takes the ashes of their deceased parent across the country. 
  95. A character vows to run from the East Coast to the West Coast of the United States of America. 
  96. A character vows to sail to every continent of the world.
  97. A character vows to fly to every continent of the world.
  98. Old retired astronauts enlist the help of a billionaire to fly them to the moon.
  99. A father does everything to return home from a WWII war zone for Christmas.
  100. The first ascent of Everest.

Read More: 101 Epic Sci-Fi Story Prompts

Chani (Zendaya) looking at Paul in 'Dune: Part Two,' 100 Epic Journey Story Prompts

'Dune: Part Two' (2024)

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Have fun, and travel well within your stories these prompts may have inspired. 

WANT MORE IDEAS? TAKE A LOOK AT OUR OTHER STORY PROMPTS!


CHECK OUT OUR PREPARATION NOTES SO YOU START YOUR STORY OFF ON THE RIGHT TRACK!

ScreenCraft Preparation Notes


Ken Miyamoto has worked in the film industry for nearly two decades, most notably as a studio liaison for Sony Studios and then as a script reader and story analyst for Sony Pictures.

He has many studio meetings under his belt as a produced screenwriter, meeting with the likes of Sony, Dreamworks, Universal, Disney, Warner Brothers, as well as many production and management companies. He has had a previous development deal with Lionsgate, as well as multiple writing assignments, including the produced miniseries Blackout, starring Anne Heche, Sean Patrick Flanery, Billy Zane, James Brolin, Haylie Duff, Brian Bloom, Eric La Salle, and Bruce Boxleitner, the feature thriller Hunter’s Creed, and many Lifetime thrillers. Follow Ken on Twitter @KenMovies and Instagram @KenMovies76

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