a kid is studying to be a Samurai/Martial Artist...
his two friends are also studying, but with different masters.
One of them is a slacker who doesn't try hard, but he blames his inexperienced and not famous teacher for his own failings. His friend has the same teacher but works super hard and still gets pretty good over a long period of time.
the third student has a famous teacher. The slacker envies him, thinking he's good because of his teacher, but that is only part of it. The slacker doesn't find out till later that the motivated friend with his same teacher is actually the best of all 3 of them because he tries so hard.
so, the whole story is celebrating taking personal responsibility for your life.
Pantheon of Gods are at war with the Titans or other evil race.
Some of them like Humans and try to protect them.
Each god could belong to a city. Like the Sumerians. Maybe they are an embodiment of that city.
For a crazy Hick dad, the apocalypse is the greatest thing that has ever happened to him. Overnight he has gone from being an unemployed loser to where his skills of fishing, hunting and shooting set him up to be a hero. Especially he can use his skills to win back the love of his estranged children.
And in the process he sheds his alcoholism and repairs his self confidence as well.
Not sure the proper format... just, I guess an idea of lots of broken people who have very different damage trying to support each other through life... perhaps a story about a fictional online group who can't sleep?
An A.I. or a Robot who tries to be a knight in shining armor and go around saving people, to results that distress the robot and the rescuees.
A character who has spent his whole career becoming the world's foremost authority on ONE historical painting... and literally nothing else... not even other paintings by the same artist.
A story where all the descriptions and characterizations are designed to tell you how good the writing is, instead of advancing the plot. Basically, it's like you're being told about the story by someone who loves the author rather than actually reading the story.