As a writer, one of the most difficult things to deal with is writer’s block. There is nothing more frustrating than wanting to write something, finding the time, and having nothing come to mind. I typically experience writer’s block when trying to start a new project. No matter how many ideas I may have, there is something intimidating about looking at a blank page. Usually when I find myself at this point, I read as much as I can, go back through old writing, and generally complain that I can’t figure out what to write next. Lately though, I’ve taken to scouring the internet for good writing prompts to help spark some ideas. I like prompts. I like the idea of taking an idea and running through it, even it doesn’t materialize into something that I want to keep working with. I find it comforting to have some suggestions on what to write. So, in order to help anyone else suffering from writer’s block, or just generally looking for some extra writing inspiration, I created a list of five writing prompts for poetry, nonfiction, fiction, and comics.
Let us know which ones you like in the comments,and if any of these ideas do happen to inspire you, submit them to us here.
- Write a conversation with your favorite writer or entertainer. What would you say to them? How would they reply?
- Write a poem including the words: dexterity, peppermint, chargeable, gulf, hogwash, and elastic.
- Take a first line from your favorite poem and make that the first line of your next poem. Compare the two poems once you’ve finished.
- Take an image from the room you’re in and make that the first line of your poem. It could be a concrete image, a line of text, or a person.
- Write a poem from the perspective of a light bulb.
- Write about your phobias. How have they affected you? Do they have any cultural or historical connections? When did you first realize you were afraid?
- Write about a dream you’ve had. How did it affect you? What do you think the real-world implications of your dream are?
- Write about your winter coat. Describe it. Tell the story of how you got it. What does this coat mean to you? Does it have a cultural or familiar significance? What does it say about you?
- Tell the story of a trip you’ve taken. Think about who was with you and how the trip was different from your expectations?
- Write about one of your first experiences. First day at a new job, first date, first day of universtiy, first time driving ect. Pick any first you can think of and write your experience.
- Write about a group of people who must rely on each other to accomplish a task, though they are classic enemies (bully and victim, popular girl and loner, etc.).
- Write about a character who refuses to choose a path in life and tries to remain in college forever. Chronicle the changes that occur from 18 to 24 years old and how the same mindset becomes less acceptable to their peers.
- Write a story about an anti-hero and draw on the irrelevancy of “good” and “bad” in terms of humans.
- Write a story in the form of a letter. The letter could be addressed to a fictional character, a famous person, to someone you know or once knew. Focus on expressing something in letter form.
- Listen in to a conversation in a crowded area. Write that conversation into a story and create characters around what is said.
- Write a comic about a holiday or family event, but introduce a famous character from mythology or folk tale. How would they get along with your family? What kind of conversations would they have?
- Explore the future wherein people’s morality shifts to value the information gained from social media over all else.
- Create a diary of a kid who never says no to anything. No experience is declined, no question left unanswered. Where does a kid like this end up in their 20s? 40s?
- Imagine a world where culture has melded together and there are no more distinct groups of people or culture divides. What becomes subversive if there is only one accepted norm? Who gets to decide what is “new” or if there is ever change? Does this world have to end in revolution?
- Write a story detailing the life of your pet from their perspective. Image what a great day would look like to them? What are their goals? Who are they inspired by?
– Bethany Olson