The idea for The Spark Inside first came back in 2006 from and was inspired by collaborations projects, such If Hanson Wore Blue Collars, Tales of the Glories, Hearts Will Bind You, and was also inspired by other exchanges done that were being done in the Harry Potter fandom.
Over time The Spark Inside as evolved. Instead of solely doing exchanges every year, other forms of challenges have been tried and evolved over the year in an attempt to keep things fresh and interesting each year.
During the spring and summer of 2006, authors wrote a story for someone else based on a list of 3 things the recipient did and did not want included in a story.
During the summer of 2007, two to three authors were give the same theme to create a story around to show the different ways the same basic plot could play out.
Spring of 2008 the theme was “Worth A Thousand Words” with a picture to base the story on plus one quote and one item to include.
In the summer of 2009, we tried collaborations. Authors were paired up with another writer they had not worked with before. They were given a list of challenges to choose from in order to create a story. This seemed to be the least successful challenge.
For spring 2010 the theme was “How Far We’ve Come.” As you might have guessed, the idea was to show how much writers have improved over the years by rewriting the first chapter of a multi-chapter story or rewriting a short story from the past. Writers provided the original along with the rewritten version so that readers would have something to compare.
In spring 2011, authors were assigned several different kinds of prompts provided by other authors. The authors then took those prompts and used them to mold together a story that is between 5,000 and 35,000 words.