Creative writing has its ups and downs. Some days, the ideas seem endless and it’s next to impossible to get them all down on paper. Other times, however, your mind seems to be completely blank and no matter what creative solution to writer’s block you try, you just can’t get your next story started.
Sometimes the easiest solution is the most obvious, but it’s one that you probably haven’t tried since elementary school. A writing prompt, though cliché, can be a great way to kick-start your creativity and get back into the flow of writing. Here are twenty interesting story possibilities to get your storytelling back on track.
20 Writing Prompts
1) It had never snowed in July before.
2) She studied her reflection in the glass.
3) They came back every year to that same spot.
4) The streets were deserted.
5) This time his boss had gone too far.
6) She woke to excited whispers.
7) I met a traveller from a strange land.
8) I always try to do the right thing, but…
9) Justice has caught up to me.
10) She’d always hated speaking in front of an audience.
11) She stood alone at what felt like the top of the world.
12) The yard was overgrown now.
13) He’d never noticed the door before.
14) She should have listened to them.
15) The asteroid was hurtling straight for Earth…
16) He turned the key in the lock and slowly opened the door.
17) He looked out across the sea.
18) The detective saw his opportunity.
19) And you thought monsters didn’t exist…
20) Top Prompt Voted on Reddit: An ordinary human being gets abducted into interplanetary Olympics that have a fun twist: The loser’s planet gets destroyed. All hope seems to be lost, until the last sport is revealed to be what humans do best.
The Three Elements Exercise
Rather than choosing a set opening sentence, sometimes it’s a fun stretch to craft a story around three seemingly unrelated elements. Why not try these out?
1) A stolen ring, peppermints and an annoying boss.
2) A flickering light, a half-eaten box of cookies and a mysterious stranger.
3) An old map, a paperclip and a nurse.
4) A love note, a filing cabinet and a ship captain.
If the three elements exercise doesn’t introduce enough randomness into the writing prompt challenge for you, here’s a surefire way to eliminate any subconscious grouping of three similar elements: Look to your left. Now to your right. Now craft an adventure story using whatever you saw as the main characters (or catalysts for events).
What sorts of writing prompts have helped you get past a creative roadblock?