How to build a story using Newspaper Articles

Building a story can be done by a variety of methods. It can be inspired by imagination, family, friends, situations, and more. This article will discuss how to build a story from the news. The news provides a variety of perspectives, situations, and time periods. The genre and time period are two essential ingredients. The genre gives you a starting point. If you are writing science fantasy, then searching for baking recipes will not be relevant. Same thing for the time period, the time period suggests a different lifestyle, culture, and language. Let’s select crime and drama, and I want law enforcement involved. The good thing with any news article is that the situation is already present. Using this information, I use google search engine (any search engine is sufficient) to look for “undercover cops gone bad”. After selecting one or two articles, I settle on the 5th result that speaks of two police units whose original goal was to stand in as drug dealers and catch drug users. However, the police units start fighting each other. Now, the rest of the article speculates as to a miscommunication. However, as a writer, this is the cliffhanger to build the rest of the story. So, two police units from different districts go undercover to raid a drug house get into a confrontation with each other. The underlying story is that while they initially had good intent, they get caught up and become “legal” drug gangs, who have a score to settle. Pausing right here, I perform another search for the twist. Did you ever wonder what law enforcement does to seized money? Well, let’s perform another search. The article delivered by Fox News summed up, states that the money is recycled. So, continuing with that same prompt, the suggested miscommunication allows them to alter camera footage and whatever explainable mishaps. The money that is retrieved by either side, is justified because the money would end up in their paycheck anyway. As for the main characters, one is John and the other is Doe. John is white descent, a good guy, and comes from a family of the law. Doe is white, a bad guy, and has a family history of crime. However, Doe thinks “big picture”. Doe becomes the law. If he can control the ground workers, he can control the city, and with the contacts he builds from imports, he can control the world. He is the ultimate drug lord. By using two news articles, I have a plot and two main characters.

https://www.google.com/amp/s/nypost.com/2017/11/13/undercover-cops-fight-each-other-in-botched-drug-raid/amp/

https://www.google.com/amp/s/www.foxnews.com/world/dirty-money-where-does-it-all-go.amp