Are you looking for mermaid story ideas and prompts? Read on for prompts like a mermaid sneaking into theatres to appease her addiction to human movies, to mermaids offering the service of turning people into one of their own!
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- Mermaid vs. Siren
- Mermaid Story Prompts
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Mermaid vs. Siren
The term mermaid sometimes is used interchangeably with siren. While siren has a murderous connotation, mermaid has a neutral connotation.
The male version of mermaid is the merman, although folklores and reported sightings recount less of them than their female counterparts. Furthermore, merfolk or merpeople are a society of mermen and mermaids’ society.
Here are some of the typical characteristics of mermaids:
- Beautiful appearances. However, there are also rare instances of ugly mermaids, some of which are the mermaids in the Harry Potter universe and margýgr in Scandinavian folklore.
- Linked to perilous occurrences: drownings, floods, storms, or shipwrecks, and seeing them is also said to be an omen for impending storm, or war.
- Possessing magical abilities such as singing voice that can drown sailors, flesh that can grant longevity to anyone who eats it, magical items that can change them into human, tears that turn into pearls, etc.
- While they can be seductive, mischievous or vicious in nature, some folklores also describe them as kind, curious, naïve gift-givers who are prone to fall in love with humans.
The Appeal of Mermaid Stories
From Disney’s carefree Ariel to the more ominous version often found in various folklores, the appeal of mermaid stories lies in the enigmatic, beautiful female creatures with agency of their own.
Moreover, its prevalence across all known cultures, from the Ancient Greek to Africa, is a testament that human’s obsession with mermaids is universal.
Possessing inhuman abilities, they’re not just damsels in distress. Moreover, the fact that they’re part of a foreign yet captivatingly exotic culture a world away from our own, deep below in the ocean, only adds to the enigmatic appeal.
Mermaid Story Prompts
Now that we have covered all the essential components of a mermaid story, let’s get started on some story ideas!
1. Someone suspects that the newest member of their competitor’s swim team is a mermaid, and swears to prove it.
2. When in the ocean, one can call on a mermaid’s help if they have a strand of mermaid hair. Someone in possession of a lock of mermaid hair is approached by a treasure hunter who’s after a sunken ship said to be carrying bullions of gold.
3. When a mermaid gets addicted to watching movies at the theatres, each night she surfaces to land and sneak into movie theatres. What happens when a theatre attendant catches her sneaking?
4. When their friend the giant turtle is captured by humans, a group of mermaids have to venture into a landlocked area to track the capturers.
1. A band of mermaids offers the service of turning regular women into mermaids, but it comes with a price. And since the transformation is permanent, what happens when a human changes her mind about the transformation?
2. In a world where merfolk and humans live side by side, a mermaid’s tail can only transform into a pair of legs if a human agrees to take her place in exchange. Moreover, the transformation is permanent.
3. Merfolk and humans live side by side with the former enslaved by the latter. Moreover, the humans treat them badly and often employ them as treasure hunters in the deep sea. What happens when they organize a rebellion against humans?
4. Merfolk and humans live side by side with the latter enslaved by the former.
5. Talking too much to a mermaid/merman will cause a human to gradually forget themselves to the point of wanting to follow their merfolk friend underwater (and subsequently die, because there’s no way they can change into a mermaid).
6. The last pair of merfolk are found deep in the ocean in critical conditions. Sick and unable to hunt, their only cure is fresh human meat. Is it ethical to feed them criminals on the death row or is it unethical to treat a human being, criminal or not, as if they’re cattle?
7. When two bestfriends in a sailing trip are caught in the middle of a war between the siren and the mermaid tribes, they must wisely choose their side or suffer the consequences.
8. While the siren’s song lures sailors to their deaths, the mermaid’s song saves them from drowning.
(Okay, all of the story ideas here are kind of wacky, but I think even more so in this section.)
1. When the merpeople decided to start a business offering underwater tours to humans, what kind of mayhem follows?
2. A yearly, mermaid singing competition deep underwater causes a recurring tsunami, to the dismay of the humans living nearby. Finally, they decide to send a human to win and possibly end the competition for good.
3. A vampire mermaid or zombie mermaid because, why not?
4. An oblivious newcomer to a sleepy fishing village discovers the hard way that the mermaids are fond of walruses, which may spell trouble as he just brought home one from his most recent fishing trip.
5. When an angler fish bites a human, they’ll turn into a mermaid/merman! Such a fate befalls your character, and now they must figure out how to navigate the underwater world while looking for ways to change back.
6. An annoyed mermaid turns a boy with a penchant for torturing sea animals into a walrus, and he must learn to have a permanent change of heart before he can convince the mermaid to change him back physically.
Here are some picture-based mermaid prompts, because, a picture speaks a thousand words! Below are some image prompts as well as some prompt ideas to accompany each.
(Please click on the image for more information.)
1. A wicked maid chances upon her mistress bathing, only to discover that the latter changes into a mermaid when her skin makes contact with water.
2. A man inherits his recluse grandfather’s estate when the latter passed away, but nowhere in his wildest imagination he expects to inherit a mermaid. And now he doesn’t know what to do with her.
(Please click on the image for more information.)
1. Rather than words, the mermaids communicate to one another with their singing voice, in a language unknown to human. That is, until one sailor comes along, and he speaks their language fluently.
2. A brokenhearted woman disillusioned with her life sets out to find the mythical island said to be inhabited by mermaids.
Furthermore, here are some other posts that you might find interesting:
- Witch Story Ideas
- Surreal Writing Prompts
- Enchanted Forest Story Ideas
- How Characters Meet: 25 Non-Cheesy Ideas!
Or browse our Story Ideas & Writing Prompts category for more ideas!
Have any question or feedback? Then, feel free to contact me here. Until next time!