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Staring at a blank page is hard. Where do you begin? With a writing prompt, obviously.
Writing prompts are great. They’re not just a tool to beat writer’s block (although they work for that), they’re also a great way to warm-up before you start your own writing projects.
Think of it like stretching before exercise, but for your creative muscles.
You should try and do a quick 500 word writing prompt daily – but that doesn’t mean you need a new prompt every day. Look at the same prompt two or three times.
4 Ways to Use (and Re-Use) Prompts:
- Use the same story idea, but write a different scene.
- Add in a new character, or change the main character
- Write from a different perspective
- Write a completely different story idea
This post contains 3 types of prompts: visual (with ideas), plot, & character.
Daily Writing Prompts
Your task: Write a scene of (at least) 500 words for each prompt.
Writing Prompts (Visual)
Use the image as inspiration to write 500+ words. If it doesn’t inspire you, check out one of the ideas.
ROAD TRIP Ideas
- It was the best vacation she’d ever been on.
- Dirty mirrors make everything look better.
- They’d been on the road for 4 days. It had been 3 since they’d seen another car.
PARK BUBBLES Ideas
- Once a year, the children were allowed to play.
- What makes it the best daycare in the world?
- How did she poison so many children?
GRAND LIBRARY Ideas
- It was the only library left.
- She’d been living in the library for 6 years.
- The stories could come to life. If you knew the secret.
FOREST FLIGHT Ideas
- After a few months, we didn’t want to be found.
- The testing center for levitation technology.
- This plane (with passengers and crew) completely disappeared over 10 years ago.
Writing Prompts (Plot)
Use the writing prompt as inspiration to write 500+ words. Feel free to change any part of the prompt you want!
Struggling with a certain area of plot? You should check out the guide to plot, then practice!
Writing Prompt #1
An advice column run by faeries is subtly ruining peoples lives. Exactly as the Faeries want it.
Writing Prompt #2
An old map is found in an attic. It looks right except there’s a huge island in the center of the Bermuda Triangle. Did you find Atlantis?
Writing Prompt #3
Your character’s favorite place is being demolished to build a giant (and boring) apartment building. (S)he decides to protest.
Writing Prompt #4
A teen God must create a universe from scratch to graduate school. His/her demonstration is happening now. It’s not going well.
Writing Prompts (Character)
Use the character information/prompt as inspiration to write 500+ words. Feel free to change any part of it that you want.
Stories contain so many characters! It’s common to do prompts from the perspective of the main character. Try something different – do a scene from the perspective of the antagonist, or practice one of the other essential character types.
Character Prompt #1
Selma is a dragon-tamer. As was her mother before her and her mother before her and so on.
Character Prompt #2
Joe has OCD. One thing he can’t stop doing is checking to make sure the taps are off.
Character Prompt #3
Anthony’s girlfriend plans to go to college far away. Not if he can help it. Anthony starts poking holes in the condoms.
Character Prompt #4
Leonie is loved by everyone. She’s the perfect everything. But Leonie has a terrible secret.
Buy a Writing Prompt Notebook
I like to do writing prompts by hand. I feel more inspired that way. I keep my writing prompts in a separate notebook, just for prompts. You can use any notebook you want (or scraps of paper).
Here are four lined notebooks that are cheap (and fun!) for your writing prompts.
Be Inspired or Inspirational!
I hope you were inspired by (at least one of) these 12 writing prompts.
Remember: Practice! Practice! Practice! It’s the only way to improve.
Ready for more? Check out these 12 Horror Writing Prompts next.
Want to inspire someone else? Post your scene(s) (or a link to them) in the comments. Be bold! Be brave!
Read what others have come up with – offer praise and/or constructive criticism. Accept the same.
We’re all in the same boat – just trying to be better writers.
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Exciting New Books (Mar 2020)
Check out these three books, set to be released in March 2020. I can't wait to get my hands on all of them (although when I'll actually read them is another story).
Hunt Athalar is a notorious Fallen angel, now enslaved to the Archangels he once attempted to overthrow. His brutal skills and incredible strength have been set to one purpose-to assassinate his boss's enemies, no questions asked. But with a demon wreaking havoc in the city, he's offered an irresistible deal: help Bryce find the murderer, and his freedom will be within reach.
As Bryce and Hunt dig deep into Crescent City's underbelly, they discover a dark power that threatens everything and everyone they hold dear, and they find, in each other, a blazing passion-one that could set them both free, if they'd only let it.
2000. Bright, ambitious, and yearning for adulthood, fifteen-year-old Vanessa Wye becomes entangled in an affair with Jacob Strane, her magnetic and guileful forty-two-year-old English teacher.
2017. Amid the rising wave of allegations against powerful men, a reckoning is coming due. Strane has been accused of sexual abuse by a former student, who reaches out to Vanessa, and now Vanessa suddenly finds herself facing an impossible choice: remain silent, firm in the belief that her teenage self willingly engaged in this relationship, or redefine herself and the events of her past.
Vincent is a bartender at the Hotel Caiette, a five-star lodging on the northernmost tip of Vancouver Island. On the night she meets Jonathan Alkaitis, a hooded figure scrawls a message on the lobby's glass wall: "Why don't you swallow broken glass." High above Manhattan, a greater crime is committed: Alkaitis is running an international Ponzi scheme, moving imaginary sums of money through clients' accounts. When the financial empire collapses, it obliterates countless fortunes and devastates lives. Vincent, who had been posing as Jonathan's wife, walks away into the night. Years later, a victim of the fraud is hired to investigate a strange occurrence: a woman has seemingly vanished from the deck of a container ship between ports of call.