Get Your Stories Out Faster With ChatGPT
7 Ways to Use ChatGPT as a Writing Assistant and Coach
To make a gargantuan understatement, ChatGPT is “a language model trained to produce text (ChatGPT FAQ | OpenAI Help Center, 2023).” To add a little clarity, it is an artificial intelligence that takes text requests and returns formatted text responses built from billions of conversations.
For example: “Create a diet plan to lose 25 pounds in 90 days.”
AI cannot replace humans as story writers because stories come from our unique beliefs, experiences, and knowledge — including our pain. Much of this we are not even conscious of so we could not put it on the Internet if we wanted to.
See also: “Get a Free, Powerful Writing System for Your First (or Next) Novel (Park, 2022).”
What AI can do is work as a creative assistant to get your stories out faster. For example, today I asked ChatGPT to outline part of a story I am writing. I will throw away 90% of it, but it gave a character I had planned on dying another option I had not considered.
Now I think she will live.
In this post, you will find some examples of creative ways to use ChatGPT as a writing assistant or coach — with a surprise at the end.
1. Use ChatGPT to Write a Starter Story On Which to Expand
The main problems with this approach are:
- Stalling out mid story,
- Telling rather than showing, and
- It is not my story.
Better approaches to using the AI come in the following sections.
- “Write a 600 word short story in the first person from the point of view: I find the ghosts of Joe Biden and Donald Trump fighting in my closet. They had died in the future and traveled back in time. I help them become friends.”
- “Write a title for the above story.”
Rivals in Life, Friends in Death: The Ghostly Transformation of Joe Biden and Donald Trump in My Closet
I woke up one morning to the sound of shouting coming from my closet. At first, I thought it was just my imagination, but as I got out of bed and walked towards the closet, the voices became clearer.
As I opened the door, I was shocked to see the ghosts of Joe Biden and Donald Trump standing in front of me, locked in a heated argument. I couldn’t believe what I was seeing. The two former presidents had somehow died in the future and traveled back in time, and now they were in my closet.
I stood there for a moment, trying to process what was happening. The ghosts didn’t seem to notice me at first, and continued their argument. But as the shouting grew louder, they finally turned to look at me.
“Who are you?” Joe Biden’s ghost asked, surprised.
“My name is…I don’t know what to say, I am shocked to see you both here, and fighting of all things,” I stammered.
“We don’t have time for this,” Donald Trump’s ghost said impatiently. “We have to stop the war.”
“War? What war?” I asked, confused.
“The war in the future,” Joe Biden’s ghost explained. “We both died in it and were sent back in time to try and prevent it from happening.”
I couldn’t believe what I was hearing. These two former presidents were trying to prevent a war that hadn’t happened yet. It sounded like something out of a science fiction movie.
“But why are you fighting with each other?” I asked.
“We have different ideas on how to stop the war,” Joe Biden’s ghost said.
“He wants to work with the other world leaders and try to negotiate a peaceful solution,” Donald Trump’s ghost added. “But I think we need to take a stronger stance and show them who’s boss.”
I could see that their different approaches were causing friction between them. As I looked at them, I realized that I might be able to help.
“Gentlemen, I understand that you both have strong opinions on how to prevent this war, but it’s not going to help anyone if you can’t work together,” I said. “Why don’t you both take a step back and try to see the other’s point of view?”
Joe Biden’s ghost looked at me thoughtfully, while Donald Trump’s ghost just crossed his arms and scowled. But after a moment, he nodded.
“Alright,” Joe Biden’s ghost said. “Let’s hear what you have to say.”
I suggested that they both sit down and talk things through calmly. We talked for hours, and I listened as they both shared their ideas and concerns. I could see that they both genuinely wanted to prevent the war, but their different perspectives were getting in the way.
As the conversation went on, I could see that they were starting to understand each other’s point of view. Joe Biden’s ghost began to see that Trump’s ideas about showing strength could be effective in certain situations, while Trump’s ghost began to understand that diplomacy and working with other leaders was important.
By the end of our conversation, the two ghosts had come to an understanding. They hugged each other and thanked me for my help.
“We couldn’t have done it without you,” Joe Biden’s ghost said.
“Yeah, you’re a real mediator,” Trump’s ghost added.
I felt a sense of satisfaction and accomplishment as I watched the two ghosts disappear into the ether. I knew that they would go back to the future and try to prevent the war.
Epilogue — Added from a Later Run
I was honored to have played a small role in bringing these two great men together. And even though they were no longer alive in the future, they had traveled back in time to make a difference in the world, and to me that was truly remarkable.
The two of them were not just ghosts, but they were also symbols of hope and friendship, showing us that even in the darkest of times, there is always a way to come together and make a difference in the world.
2. Use ChatGPT to Generate Writing Prompts
ChatGPT does mediocre writing prompts in my opinion, but they are a lot easier to work with than the generated stories.
Here is one I asked for:
“Give me a writing prompt for a ghost story involving the ghost of President Donald Trump and the ghost of President Joe Biden.”
After the passing of both President Donald Trump and President Joe Biden, their spirits are trapped in the White House, unable to move on. They discover they are stuck in a time loop, reliving the events of their presidency over and over again. As they explore the White House, they find that they are not alone and that the ghost of every president who ever lived in the White House is trapped there too. The two former presidents, who never had a chance to reconcile during their lifetimes, must find a way to work together and find a way to break the curse and move on to the afterlife. They begin to uncover the truth about the past and the secrets of the White House, and as they work together, they begin to understand and appreciate each other’s perspectives, ultimately leading to a newfound respect for one another. But will they be able to break the curse or will they be doomed to relive their pasts forever?
3. Generate Outlines
“Write an outline for the above prompt.”
- Introduce the setting as the White House after the passing of both President Donald Trump and President Joe Biden
- The spirits of both presidents are trapped in the White House, unable to move on
- They discover they are stuck in a time loop, reliving the events of their presidency over and over again
- They find that they are not alone and that the ghost of every president who ever lived in the White House is trapped there too
II. The discovery of the curse
- The two former presidents begin to explore the White House, and as they do, they uncover clues about the curse that has trapped them there
- They learn that the curse was placed on the White House by a powerful sorcerer who had a grudge against the government
- They also learn that the curse can only be broken if the spirits of all the presidents work together
III. The Struggle to reconcile
- As they explore the White House, they begin to relive the events of their presidency, and the memories of their past conflicts come flooding back
- They struggle to work together and find a way to break the curse, as they are still holding on to past grudges and resentments
- They begin to understand and appreciate each other’s perspectives and they start to reconcile.
IV. Uncovering the truth
- As they continue to work together, they begin to uncover the truth about the past and the secrets of the White House
- They discover that the sorcerer who placed the curse had a hidden agenda, and that the curse was not just about trapping the spirits of the presidents, but also about manipulating the course of history
- They also discover that some spirits are manipulating the events and trying to prevent the curse from being broken.
- The two former presidents and the other spirits finally find a way to break the curse and move on to the afterlife.
- They come to a new found respect for each other and understanding of the past.
- As the curse is broken, the White House is purged of its dark past and the spirits are finally at peace.
4. Get Ideas for Obstacles or Solutions
“Give me 4 possible ways they could break the curse.”
- By uncovering the sorcerer’s true motivation and finding a way to reverse the curse: The spirits could uncover the sorcerer’s true motivation behind the curse, and find a way to reverse it, either by finding a counter-curse or by convincing the sorcerer to lift the curse.
- By working together to find the sorcerer’s weakness and exploiting it: The spirits could work together to find the sorcerer’s weakness and exploit it, such as by finding a way to weaken the sorcerer’s power or by finding a way to disrupt the curse’s energy source.
- By exploring the White House and finding a hidden artifact that holds the key to breaking the curse: The spirits could explore the White House and find a hidden artifact that holds the key to breaking the curse, such as a magical object or a secret spell.
- By accepting their past and finding a way to move on: The spirits could come to terms with their past, accept their actions and find a way to move on from the past. This could involve some kind of spiritual or emotional healing, which allows them to break the curse and move on to the afterlife.
“What are some obstacles to the presidents working together.”
- Past conflicts and grudges: Each president may have had conflicts and grudges with one another during their time in office, which could make it difficult for them to work together towards a common goal.
- Different ideologies and beliefs: Each president may have different ideologies and beliefs, which could make it difficult for them to find common ground and work together effectively.
- Lack of trust: Some presidents may not trust one another, and may be hesitant to work together, which could slow down the process of breaking the curse.
- Different levels of experience and skill: Each president may have different levels of experience and skill when it comes to the tasks required to break the curse, which could make it difficult for them to work together effectively.
- Different visions of what they want to achieve after breaking the curse: Each president may have different visions of what they want to achieve after breaking the curse, which could make it difficult for them to agree on a course of action.
- Some spirits may be reluctant to break the curse: Some spirits may be content being stuck in the White House, and may not want to break the curse, which could make it difficult to achieve a consensus.
- Some spirits may be manipulating the events to prevent the curse from being broken: Some spirits may have an interest in keeping the curse intact, and may be manipulating the events to prevent the curse from being broken.
5. Get Ideas for Injecting Humor
“What is a funny past secret they could discover?”
One possible funny past secret that the spirits of the presidents could discover is that a past president had a secret passion for collecting and playing with inflatable dolls. This could be a source of amusement for the spirits as they explore the White House, and could also provide a moment of levity in the story, as the characters may have a lighthearted conversation about the absurdity of the situation. The spirits could also use this discovery as a way to bond and connect with one another, as they share a laugh and a moment of absurdity. Additionally, it could also be used as a plot point to show how the past president was not as serious as they were perceived to be, and how they too have human side to them.
“Which president should be the one who plays with inflatable dolls?”
It’s ultimately up to the writer’s discretion which president should be the one who plays with inflatable dolls, as it will depend on the story and characters they want to create. However, it could be interesting to have a president who was known for being serious or uptight in life to be the one with this secret, as it would add an element of surprise and contrast to their character.
It could be a past president who was known for his seriousness and stoicism, such as Abraham Lincoln, or a president who was known for his strict adherence to protocol and decorum, such as George Washington. Alternatively, it could be a more recent president, known for being a political figure, and having a strong public image, such as Barack Obama or George W. Bush.
It would be also funny if the president who played with inflatable dolls was the one who was known for being tough and militaristic, such as Dwight D. Eisenhower, or a president who was known for his conservative views and traditional values, such as Ronald Reagan.
6. Generate Character Sheets
“Write a character sheet for the sorcerer.”
Name: Magnus Blackwood
Appearance: Tall, gaunt figure with piercing eyes and a long, white beard. Dresses in black robes adorned with arcane symbols.
Background: Magnus was once a respected member of the magical community, but grew disillusioned with the government and its treatment of those with magical abilities. He began to study dark magic and eventually turned to using his powers for personal gain.
Personality: Magnus is ruthless and calculating, willing to do whatever it takes to achieve his goals. He holds a deep grudge against the government and sees the curse as a way to exert his power over them. He is also highly intelligent and possesses a vast knowledge of magic.
Abilities: Magnus is a powerful sorcerer, able to manipulate the elements and summon spirits. He is also skilled in divination and mind control. He has a particular affinity for curses and is able to place them with great precision.
Weaknesses: Magnus is overconfident in his abilities and can be blinded by his own ambition. He is also vulnerable to attacks on his physical body, as his powers are mainly focused on the spiritual realm.
Motivation: Magnus’s ultimate goal is to rewrite history in his own image, using the curse to manipulate the actions of the presidents and ultimately shape the course of the country. He also seeks revenge on the government for their treatment of him and other magic users.
“Regenerate Magnus Blackwood character sheet but Magnus is a young boy expelled from the order, with the same personality, problems with the government, and motivation.”
Name: Magnus Blackwood
Appearance: Magnus is a young boy with dark hair and piercing eyes. He is small for his age and often wears a scowl on his face.
Background: Magnus was born into a family of sorcerers and trained in the magical arts from a young age. However, he quickly became disillusioned with the strict hierarchy and rules of the order and began to experiment with forbidden magic. Eventually, his unorthodox practices led to his expulsion from the order.
Personality: Magnus is a brilliant but troubled child, with a deep resentment towards authority figures. He is fiercely independent and has a strong desire for power and control. He can be cruel and manipulative, using his abilities to bend others to his will.
Abilities: Despite his young age, Magnus is a highly skilled sorcerer with a particular talent for dark magic and curses. He is able to manipulate the elements and summon spirits with ease and has a keen understanding of divination and mind control.
Weaknesses: Magnus is impulsive and reckless, often acting without thinking things through. His youth and lack of experience make him vulnerable to more experienced sorcerers. He also has a tendency to underestimate others, which can lead to mistakes.
Motivation: Magnus’s ultimate goal is to take control of the government and reshape the country in his own image. He sees the curse as a means to an end, a way to manipulate the actions of the presidents and gain power over the government that expelled him. He seeks revenge and to prove himself to the order who rejected him.
7. SURPRISE: Ask ChatGPT how to use ChatGPT!
“How can I use ChatGPT to help me write a novel?”
ChatGPT can be a useful tool to help you write a novel in a few ways:
- Generating ideas: You can use ChatGPT to help generate ideas for characters, plot, and setting. Simply provide a prompt, such as “Write a short story about a detective solving a murder in a small town” and ChatGPT will generate a story based on your input.
- Writing assistance: Once you have an idea for your novel, you can use ChatGPT to help with specific sections of your writing. For example, if you’re struggling to write a particular scene, you can provide a prompt with the details of the scene and ChatGPT will generate text based on your input.
- Proofreading: After you have written your novel, you can use ChatGPT to proofread your work for grammar, punctuation, and style.
- Collaboration: You can use ChatGPT to collaborate with other writers or writing groups. You can share your work with others and receive feedback, comments, and suggestions for revisions.
It is important to note that ChatGPT is a language model that can assist in the writing process. However, it’s not a substitute for your own creativity and writing skills.
- ChatGPT FAQ | OpenAI Help Center. 2023. OpenAI. OpenAI. January 5, 2023. https://help.openai.com/en/articles/6783457-chatgpt-faq.
- Park, Preston. 2022. “Get a Free, Powerful Writing System for Your First (or Next) Novel.” Winning Growth Systems. July 2, 2022. https://winninggrowthsystems.com/blog/get-a-free-powerful-writing-system-for-your-first-or-next-novel/.