Contemporary Literature

Book Project Ideas

(These ideas are ALL TAKEN from             

  • Write a letter to the novel’s author inviting him or her to come visit the class.
  • Write a paper describing the goals, dreams, and motives behind a main character in the novel.
  • Write a scene that could have happened in the book, but did not.  Explain the effect it would have had on the novel.
  • Write a resume for a main character in the book you read.  Tape monologues of the character telling about his or her experiences.
  • Create a debate between two characters on an issue.  Write out the script.  Remember to stay true to the characters the author created!  Talk a buddy into helping you present it to the class for more marks.
  • Create a photo presentation that captures the main events of the novel. Create a soundtrack that could be used if the novel were ever produced as a movie.
  • Create a diary as if you were the main character of the novel.
  • Gather a large collection of current events that reflect incidents that closely parallel the novel.
  • Create a personality folder for a colorful character in the novel. Using a file folder, create a montage of pictures portraying the character's personality on one side. On the other side write a detailed explanation of the illustrations.
  • Write a poem that captures the essence of the novel.
  • Create a comic strip series based on the book.
  • Has your book ever been on a banned book list? If so, research to find out why. Write a position statement, stating why you think the book should or should not be banned.
  • Nominate characters you have read about for awards which reveal something about their characters. Let your creative juices flow as you create awards which will show us something about the characters in your novel. List the character (and the novel he or she is in and its author) and award he or she is to receive. Then use a quote from the novel to tell us why you would present the character with that particular award. You can even create certificates or descriptions of prizes to go along with awards!! EXAMPLE: John Barron Nose Sprayer Extraordinare in The Haymeadow by Gary Paulsen "The board hit him across the back of his shoulders like a sledgehammer. He saw something, a spray, out of his nostrils, saw it spray from the wind leaving his lungs because of the force of the board, saw it as he went down and thought, funny, funny how that sprayed and I didn't even know it was coming. Funny . . All fuzzy and funny how that happened and he was on his knees and then on his face and all the time he thought how funny and fuzzy it was, the spray."
  • Select a character, think about his or her involvements and experiences, then figure out which talk show would most want your character on as a guest. What would they want the character to talk about? Who else would they invite on the show to address the issues the character is involved in? Write up the correspondence between the talk show host and the character in which the host explains what the character should focus on while on the show. After the show, have them exchange one more letter mentioning how they felt about what happened.
  • Your character calls into a radio show for advice. Choose which show your character would call in to and then create the conversation he or she would have with the radio advice giver.
  • Create the e-mail directory of all the people you can imagine your character keeping in touch with on e-mail. Explain why you selected the people you did and what it shows about your character. Then construct several exchanges between your character and some of the people in your character's directory.
  • Where do you think your character would most like to go on a vacation? Pick a spot, describe it, and explain why he or she would want to go there or download information from the Internet on the place. Then write a day-by-day itinerary of what the character would do each day and why you think the character would enjoy this activity.
  • Think about all the kinds of mementos you would put in a scrapbook for your character, cutting out pictures from magazines or drawing the mementos he or she would have in a scrapbook.
  • Write an opinion column like those that appear on the editorial page of the newspaper. Choose a theme or topic from the novel you just read and write the column from the point of view of one of the characters. Your character might write about the importance of education or why we should accept people who are not like us.
  • Answering machine messages have gotten more and more creative over the years, reflecting the interests and idiosyncrasies of the owner. Select five characters from the novel you have just read and create an answering machine message from each of them. Pay particular attention to diction and tone.
  • To show your understanding of a character, go through several magazines and newspapers looking for advertisements of goods you think your character would like. Cut out the pictures, mount them on a poster board, and under each picture write a few lines about why this product would appeal to your character. Think of an issue that was very important to your character. Then create a pamphlet aimed at persuading others of the importance of the issue. Include factual information, testimonials, picture or graphics, etc. For instance, Charlotte from The True Confessions of Charlotte Doyle by Avi might want to create a pamphlet explaining the reasons women should have more life choices.
  • There are other book project ideas on the following website.