To get my muse started I am using different tools and techniques..
Character systems (MBTI, Enneagram) are a great source to get inspirations and ideas – especially for ideas to illustrate ELEMENTS. There are many websites, books, blogs … where you can get detailed descriptions of character traits and interesting conflicts. You can look for Dramatica terms in the sources to get a go and take it from there.
Sites with writing and plot prompts (e.g. Hatch's Plot Bank) are very helpful as well to find conflict situation and illustrations for ISSUES.
Sometimes to google it makes often sense as well. What I find helpful when I start to research my theme is to google the dramatica term plus “quote” to see what other people have said about it already and what I could add new to it.
Dictionaries (e.g.collinsdictionary) are good to check a specific term and get some sample sentences. I am not sure if you need this one, but as I am not a native speaker for me is extremely helpful. However, it was mentioned here on the board earlier, always check the Dramatica Dictionary first as some terms have a slightly different meaning in Dramatica.
Personally, I run a wordpress blog locally on my Laptop where I have a huge collection of simple text notes. Everything I read, hear and/or see and which somehow caught my attention as an author goes into my Zettelkasten (Slipbox) together with a few tags. Since I work with Dramatica I also use Dramatica Terms as tags. This proves to be very helpful. Since I have more than 5k notes now I am pretty quick with generating new ideas for illustrations by just looking for a specific tag/term.
I also currently working on a dramatica-thesaurus which I want to publish later. The basic idea is to have a page for each term (Element, Issue, Concern) with categories and bullet points to get your muse started.
Maybe the categories from my thesaurus can help you as well to come up with illustrations:
What are (category) for my dramatica term (element, issue, concern) ?
- List of Nouns and Synonyms
- Positive and Negative Facets
- Potential Conflicts
- Action verbs (to show and not tell)
- Possible Scenes
- Typical Settings, Locations
- Typical Roles and Archetypes to play
- Connected Values, Needs, Emotions
- Possible questions the story mind might ask
- Arguments (Quotes)