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The most common advice out there for being a writer is, "if you want to write, write." While this is true (and good advice), it's not always that easy, particularly if you're not writing regularly.

Whether you're looking for help getting started on your next project, or just want to spend 20 minutes being creative, writing prompts are great ways to rev up your imagination. Read on for our list of over 100 creative writing prompts!

feature image credit: r. nial bradshaw /Flickr

10 Short Writing Prompts

If you're looking for a quick boost to get yourself going, these 10 short writing prompts will do the trick.

#1 : Write a scene starting with a regular family ritual that goes awry.

#2 : Describe exactly what you see/smell/hear/etc, right now. Include objects, people, and anything else in your immediate environment.

#3 : Suggest eight possible ways to get a ping pong ball out of a vertical pipe.

#4 : A shoe falls out of the sky. Justify why.

#5 : If your brain were a tangible, physical place, what would it be like?

#6 : Begin your writing with the phrase, "The stage was set."

#7 : You have been asked to write a history of "The Summer of [this past year]." Your publisher wants a table of contents. What events will you submit?

#8 : Write a sympathetic story from the point of view of the "bad guy." (Think fractured fairy tales like Wicked or The True Story of the 3 Little Pigs! , although the story doesn't have to be a fairy tale.)

#9 : Look at everyday objects in a new way and write about the stories one of these objects contains.

#10 : One person meets a stranger on a mode of transportation. Write the story that ensues.

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11 Writing Prompts for Kids

Any of these prompts can be used by writers of any age, but we chose the following 11 prompts as ones that would be particularly fun for kids to write about. (Most of them I used myself as a young writer, so I can vouch for their working!)

#1 : Include something falling in your writing.

#2 : Write a short poem (or story) with the title, "We don't know when it will be fixed."

#3 : Write from the perspective of someone of a different gender than you.

#4 : Write a dumb internet quiz.

#5 : Finish this thought: "A perfect day in my imagination begins like this:"

#6 : Write a character's inner monologue (what they are thinking as they go about their day).

#7 : Think of a character. Write a paragraph each about:

  • An important childhood experience that character had.
  • The character's living situation.
  • Two hobbies or things the character likes to do.
  • The room where the character sleeps.
  • An ambition of the character.
  • Two physical characteristics of the character.
  • What happens when a second person and this character meet.
  • Two important defining personal traits of this character.

#8 : Start a story with a quote from a song.

#9 : Begin a story with, "It was the summer of ______ when ______"

#10 : Pretend everyday objects have no names. Think about what you would name them based on what they do, what you can use them for, and what they look like.

#11 : Start a story with the phrases "My grandparents are/were," "My parents are/were," or "My mother/father/parent is/was."

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15 Cool Writing Prompts

#1 : List five issues that you're passionate about. Write about them from the opposite point of view (or from the perspective of a character with the opposite point of view).

#2 : Walk around and write down a phrase you hear (or read). Make a story out of it.

#3 : Write using no adjectives or adverbs.

#4 : Write a character's inner dialogue between different aspects of a character's self (rather than an inner monologue).

#5 : Write a true story from your past that involves light or darkness in some way.

#6 : "Saying goodbye awakens us to the true nature of things." Write something in which someone has to say goodbye and has a realization.

#7 : Begin by writing the end of the story.

#8 : Write a recipe for an intangible thing.

#9 : Write a horror story about an ordinary situation (e.g., buying groceries, going to the bank, listening to music).

#10 : Write a story from within a bubble.

#11 : Write down 2-3 short character descriptions and then write the characters in conversation with one another.

#12 : Write a story in second person.

#13 : Write a story that keeps contradicting itself.

#14 : Write about a character with at least three big problems.

#15 : Write something that takes place on a Friday, the 13th (of any month).

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15 Funny Writing Prompts

#1 : Write a story which starts with someone eating a pickle and potato sandwich.

#2 : Write a short script where the plot has to do with evil dolls trying to take over something.

#3 : Write about writers' block.

#4 : List five election issues that would be ridiculous to includes as part of your election platform (e.g. outlawing mechanical pencils and clicky pens, mandating every person over the age of 30 must own an emergency last rites kit). Choose one of the ridiculous issues and write a speech in favor of it.

#5 : Write a children's story that is insanely inappropriate but can't use graphic language, curses, or violence.

#6 : List five careers. Write about someone with one of those careers who wants to quit it.

#7 : Write down a list of murder methods. Choose one at random from the list to use in a story.

#8 : Write a romance story in which the hero must have a last name corresponding with a physical characteristic (e.g. Jacques Hairyback or Flora Dimple).

#9 : Come up with 10 different ways to:

  • order a pizza
  • congratulate someone on a job well done
  • return to the store something that's broken

#10 : Search for "random Renaissance painting" (or any other inspirational image search text you can think of) on any online internet image search engine. Picking one image, write half a page each of:

  • Statements about this image (e.g. "I meant bring me the BREAD of John the Baptist").
  • Questions about this image (e.g. "How many of those cherubs look like their necks are broken?").
  • Explanations of this image (e.g. "The painter ran out of blue paint halfway through and had to improvise for the color of the sky").
  • Commands said by people in this image or about this image (e.g. "Stop telling me to smile!" or "Bring me some gasoline!").

#11 : Write starting with a word that sounds like "chute" (e.g. "chute," "shoot," "shooed").

#12 : Write about a character named X "The [article of clothing]" Y (e.g. Julie "The Yellow Darted Skirt" Whyte) or simply referred to by their clothing (e.g. "the man in the brown suit" or "the woman in black").

#13 : Write down a paragraph each describing two wildly different settings. Write a story involving both settings.

#14 : Think of a fictional holiday based around some natural event (e.g. the Earth being at its farthest point from the sun, in memory of a volcanic eruption, that time a cloud looked like a rabbit riding a bicycle). Write about how this holiday is celebrated.

#15 : Write a "Just-So" type story about a fictional creature (e.g. "how the dragon got its firebreath" or "how the mudkip got its cheek gills").

body_justsostory

54 Other Writing Prompt Ideas

#1 : Borrow a character from some other form of media (or create your own). Write from that character's perspective.

#2 : Write for and against a non-consequential controversy (e.g., salt vs. pepper, Mac vs. PC, best kind of door).

#3 : Choose an ancestor or a person from the past to write about or to.

#4 : Write a pirate story with a twist.

#5 : Have a character talk about another character and their feelings about that other character.

#6 : Pick a season and think about an event in your life that occurred in that season. Write a creative nonfiction piece about that event and that season.

#7 : Think of something very complicated and long. Write a page about it using short sentences.

#8 : Write a story as a dream.

#9 : Describe around a food without ever directly naming it.

#10 : Write a monologue (one character, talking to the audience/reader) (*not* an inner monologue).

#11 : Begin a story with the phrase, "It only took five seconds to..."

#12 : List five strong emotions. Choosing one, write about a character experiencing that emotion, but only use the character's actions to convey how they are feeling (no outright statements).

#13 : Write a chapter of the memoir of your life.

#14 : Look through the (physical) things you're currently carrying with you or wearing. Write about the memories or emotions tied with each of them.

#15 : Go be in nature. Write drawing your story from your surroundings (both physical, social, and mental/emotional).

body_writinginnature

#16 : Write from the perspective of a bubble (or bubble-like creature).

#17 : A person is jogging along an asphalt road. Write a story.

#18 : Title your story (or poem, or play, etc) "Anti-_____". Fill in the blank and write the story.

#19 : Write something that must include an animal, a mineral, and a vegetable.

#20 : Begin your writing with the phrase, "6 weeks later..."

#21 : List 5-10 office jobs. Pick one of them and describe a person working in that job as if you were a commentator on an Olympic sporting event.

#22 : Practice your poetic imagery: overwrite a description of a character's breakfast routine.

#23 : Write about a character (or group of characters) trying to convince another character to try something they're scared of.

#24 : Keep an eye out in your environment for examples of greengrocer's apostrophes and rogue quotation marks. Pick an example and write about what the misplaced punctuation implies (e.g., we have the "best" meat or we have the best "meat" ).

#25 : Fill in the blank with the first word that comes to mind: "_______ Riot!" Write a newspaper-style article describing the events that that took place.

#26 : Write from the point of view of your most-loved possession. What does it think of you?

#27 : Think of five common sayings (e.g., "An apple a day keeps the doctor away"). Write a horror story whose plot is one of those common sayings.

#28 : Write a scene in which two characters are finally hashing out a long-standing misunderstanding or disagreement.

#29 : You start receiving text messages from an unknown number. Tell the story of what happens next.

#30 : Write one character bragging to another about the story behind their new tattoo.

#31 : Superheroes save the world...but they also leave a lot of destruction in their wake. Write about a normal person in a superhero's world.

#32 : Sometimes, family is who we are related to; sometimes, family is a group of people we gather around ourselves. Write a story about (some of) a character's found family and relatives meeting for the first time.

#33 : Write a story that begins in the middle of the plot's action ( en media res ).

#34 : Everyone says you can never have too much of a good thing. Write a story where that isn't true.

#35 : What do ghosts do when they're not creating mischief? Write about the secret lives of ghosts.

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#36 : Every year, you dread the last week of April. Write a story about why.

#37 : Write a story about what it would be like to have an animal sidekick in real life.

#38 : Heists don't just have to be black-clad thieves stealing into vaults to steal rare art or money. Write about a group of people (adults or children) who commit a heist for something of seemingly little monetary value.

#39 : "Life is like a chooseable-path adventure, except you don't get to see what would have happened if you chose differently." Think of a choice you've made and write about a world where you made a different choice.

#40 : Write a story about a secret room.

#41 : You find a message in a bottle with very specific directions. Write a story about the adventure you embark upon.

#42 : "You'll always be okay as long as you know where your _______ is." Fill in the blank and write a story (either fictional or from your life) illustrating this statement.

#43 : Forcing people into prolonged proximity can change and deepen relationships. Write about characters on a road trip together.

#44 : In music, sonata form includes three main parts: exposition, development, and recapitulation. Write a short story that follows this format.

#45 : Begin writing with a character saying, "I'm afraid this simply can't wait."

#46 : Write a story with a happy ending (either happily-ever-after or happy-for-now).

#47 : Write about a character before and after a tragedy in that character's life.

#48 : Choose an object or concept you encounter in everyday life (e.g. tables, the feeling of hot or cold, oxygen) and write an infomercial about it.

#49 : "Life is a series of quests, whether important or mundane." Write about a quest you've gone on (or would like to go on, or will have to go on).

#50 : List 10 different ways to learn. Choose one (or more) and write a story where a character learns something using that one (or more) method.

#51 : You've been called to the principal's office for bad behavior. You know what you did. Explain and justify yourself.

#52 : A character discovers their sibling owns a cursed object. Write about what happens next.

#53 : Write a character description by writing a list of items that would be on a scavenger hunt about them.

#54 : The slogan for a product or service you're advertising is, "Kid-tested, _____." Fill in the blank and write the copy for a radio or podcast advertisement for your product.

body_kidtestedwritingprompt

How to Use Creative Writing Prompts

There's no wrong way to use a creative writing prompt (unless it's to harass and hurt someone)—the point of them is to get you writing and your imagination flowing.

To help you get the most out of these writing prompts, however, we've come up with the six tips below. Try them out!

#1: DON'T Limit Yourself to Prose

Unless you're writing for a particular assignment, there's no reason everything you write in response to a writing prompt has to be prose fiction . Instead of writing your response to a prompt as a story, try writing a poem, nonfiction essay, play, screenplay, or some other format entirely.

#2: DON'T Edit as You Write

The purposes of writing prompts is to get you writing, typos and weird grammar and all. Editing comes later, once you've finished writing and have some space from it to come back to what you wrote.

It's OK to fix things that will make it difficult to read what you've written (e.g., a weird autocorrect that changes the meaning of a sentence), but don't worry too much about typos or perfect grammar when you're writing; those are easy enough to fix in edits . You also can always insert asterisks or a short note as you're writing to remind yourself to go back to fix something (for instance, if as you're writing it seems like you want to move around the order of your paragraphs or insert something earlier).

#3: DO Interpret the Prompt Broadly

The point of using a writing prompt is not to write something that best exemplifies the prompt, but something that sparks your own creativity. Again, unless you're writing in response to an assignment with specific directions, feel free to interpret writing prompts as broadly or as narrowly as you want.

For instance, if your prompt is to write a story that begins with "The stage was set," you could write about anything from someone preparing to put a plan into motion to a literal theatre stage constructed out of pieces of old sets (or something else entirely).

If you're using a writing prompt, it doesn't have to be the first sentence of your story or poem, either; you can also use the prompt as a goal to work towards in your writing.

#4: DO Try Switching Up Your Writing Methods

If it's a possibility for you, see if you write differently in different media. Do you write the same kind of stories by hand as you would typing at a computer? What about if you dictate a story and then transcribe it? Or text it to a friend? Varying the method you use to write can affect the stories you're able to tell.

For example, you may find that it's easier for you to tell stories about your life to a voice recorder than to try to write out a personal essay. Or maybe you have trouble writing poetry, but can easily text yourself or a friend a poem. You might even find you like a writing method you've not tried before better than what you've been doing!

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#5: DO Mix and Match Prompt Ideas

If you need more inspiration, feel free to combine multiple prompts (but don't overwhelm yourself with too much to write about).

You can also try switching genres from what might be suggested in the prompt. For instance, try writing a prompt that seems funny in a serious and sad way, or finding the humor in something that otherwise seems humorless. The categories we've organized the prompts into are by no means limiters on what you're allowed to write about.

#6: DO Try to Write Regularly

The more regularly you write, the easier it will be to write (with or without writing prompts).

For some people, this means writing daily; for others, it means setting aside time to write each weekend or each month. Set yourself an achievable goal (write 2x a week, write 1000 words a month) and stick to it. You can always start small and then ramp your wordcount or frequency up.

If you do better when you have something outside yourself prompting to write, you may also want to try something like morning pages , which encourages you to write at least 750 words every day, in any format (story, diary entry, social media postings, etc).

body_planouttimetowrite

What's Next?

Thinking about attending college or grad school for creative writing? Our articles on whether or not you should major in creative writing and the best creative writing programs are there for you! Plus, if you're a high schooler, you should check out these top writing contests .

Creative writing doesn't necessarily have to be fiction. Check out these three examples of narrative writing and our tips for how to write your own narrative stories and essays .

Just as writing prompts can help give form to amorphous creative energy, using specific writing structures or devices can be great starting points for your next story. Read through our discussion of the top 20 poetic devices to know and see if you can work at least one new one into your next writing session.

Still looking for more writing ideas? Try repurposing our 100+ easy drawing ideas for characters, settings, or plot points in your writing.

Laura graduated magna cum laude from Wellesley College with a BA in Music and Psychology, and earned a Master's degree in Composition from the Longy School of Music of Bard College. She scored 99 percentile scores on the SAT and GRE and loves advising students on how to excel in high school.

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Creative Primer

25 Creative Writing Prompts to Ignite Your Creativity

Brooks Manley

Creative writing is a vast and dynamic field that offers a platform for individuals to express their ideas, emotions, and stories in an imaginative and original way.

It plays a crucial role in enhancing communication skills, fostering empathy, and also promoting a deep understanding of the human experience. If you’re not sure how to get started, consider these helpful writing prompts – let’s get creative!

The Importance of Creative Writing

In the realm of literature and beyond, creative writing holds a pivotal role. It not only allows for personal expression but also:

  • fosters critical thinking
  • enhances vocabulary
  • improves writing skills
  • conveys complex ideas and emotions
  • serves as a therapeutic medium
  • enhances empathy

From short stories and poetry to novels and screenplays, creative writing spans a wide array of genres and styles, and offers endless opportunities for exploration and expression.

In the professional realm, creative writing skills are highly valued. They can lead to various creative writing jobs in fields like publishing, advertising, journalism, and content creation. For those interested in pursuing higher education in this field, you might want to explore whether a degree in creative writing is worth it .

Understanding Creative Writing Prompts

When it comes to igniting creativity and fostering unique ideas, creative writing prompts play an invaluable role. They provide a starting point, a spark that can lead to a flame of inspiration for writers.

How Prompts Can Ignite Creativity

While creative writing is an exciting field, it can sometimes be challenging to kickstart the creative process. This is where creative writing prompts come into play. These prompts are designed to ignite the imagination and inspire writers to create original and compelling pieces.

They help to overcome writer’s block , encourage experimentation with different styles and genres. So, whether you’re a seasoned writer or a beginner, creative writing prompts can be an invaluable tool to spark creativity and enhance your writing skills.

What are Creative Writing Prompts?

Creative writing prompts are essentially ideas, questions, or topics that are designed to inspire and stimulate the creative writing process. They serve as a catalyst, helping to ignite the writer’s imagination and encourage them to explore new themes, concepts, or perspectives.

These prompts can take a myriad of forms. They might be a single word, a phrase, a sentence, or even an image. Remember, regardless of the format, the goal of a creative writing prompt is to trigger thought and also encourage writers to delve deeper into their creative psyche, producing unique and compelling pieces of writing.

For more understanding of what creative writing entails, read our article on what is creative writing .

Types of Creative Writing Prompts

There are various types of creative writing prompts, each tailored to stimulate different forms of writing, cater to various genres, or inspire certain ideas. For example, you might encounter:

  • Fiction Writing Prompts : These prompts are designed to inspire stories. They might provide a setting, a character, a conflict, or a plot point to kick-start the writer’s imagination.
  • Non-Fiction Writing Prompts : These prompts are geared towards non-fiction writing, such as essays, memoirs, or journalistic pieces. They might pose a question, present a topic, or propose a perspective for the writer to explore.
  • Poetry Writing Prompts : These prompts are tailored for writing poetry. They could suggest a theme, a form, a line, or a poetic device to be used in the poem.
  • Dialogue Writing Prompts : These prompts focus on conversations and are designed to inspire dialogue-driven pieces. They generally provide a line or a snippet of conversation to act as a starting point.
  • Story Starter Writing Prompts : These prompts serve as the opening line or the first paragraph of a story. The writer’s task is to continue the narrative from there.

Understanding the different types of creative writing prompts is essential to making the most of them. For example, when you choose the right type of prompt, you target specific writing skills , push boundaries of creativity, and provide the necessary spark to bring your ideas to life.

25 Creative Writing Prompts

Using creative writing prompts is a great way to jumpstart your creativity and get the ideas flowing. Whether you’re a seasoned writer or a beginner, these prompts can help inspire your next piece. Here, we’ve broken down 25 prompts into five categories: fiction, non-fiction, poetry, dialogue, and story starters.

Fiction Writing Prompts

Fiction allows writers to flex their imaginative muscles. The following prompts can help to stir up new ideas for a unique storyline:

  • Write a story where the main character finds an old, mysterious letter in the attic.
  • Imagine a world where animals can talk.
  • Create a tale where a character discovers they have a superpower.
  • Write about a character who wakes up in a different era.
  • Write a story set in a world where money doesn’t exist.

Non-Fiction Writing Prompts

Non-fiction writing can help you explore real-life experiences and lessons. Here are some prompts to get you started:

  • Write about a time when you faced a significant challenge and how you overcame it.
  • Describe the most influential person in your life.
  • Share a moment when you learned a valuable lesson.
  • Write about an unforgettable trip.
  • Discuss a current event that has impacted you personally.

Poetry Writing Prompts

Poetry allows for artistic expression through words. These prompts can inspire new verses:

  • Write a poem about a dream you can’t forget.
  • Create a sonnet about the changing seasons.
  • Write about an emotion without naming it directly.
  • Craft a poem inspired by a piece of art.
  • Pen a haiku about nature’s power.

Dialogue Writing Prompts

Dialogue writing can help you improve your dialogue creation skills. Try these prompts:

  • Write a conversation between two people stuck in an elevator.
  • Describe a heated argument between a character and their best friend.
  • Create a dialogue where a character reveals a deep secret.
  • Write an exchange between a detective and a suspect.
  • Craft a conversation between two people who speak different languages.

Story Starter Writing Prompts

Story starters are great for sparking an idea for a story. Here are some to try:

  • “When she opened the door, she couldn’t believe her eyes…”
  • “He’d waited his whole life for this moment, and now…”
  • “It was a town like no other, because…”
  • “She was the last person on earth, or so she thought…”
  • “The letter arrived, marked with a seal she didn’t recognize…”

These creative writing prompts are designed to challenge you and spark your creativity. Remember, the goal is not to create a perfect piece of writing but to ignite your imagination and hone your writing skills. Also, don’t forget, you can always revise and refine your work later .

For more on the art of writing, check out our article on what is creative writing .

Making the Most of Your Creative Writing Prompts

Now that you have a list of creative writing prompts at your disposal, it’s important to understand how to utilize them effectively. The value of a prompt lies not just in the initial idea it provides, but also in how it can be expanded and developed into a full-blown piece of writing.

How to Use Creative Writing Prompts Effectively

Using creative writing prompts effectively requires an open mind and a willingness to explore. Here are some strategies to make the most of your prompts:

  • Brainstorming: Allow yourself to brainstorm ideas after reading the prompt. Jot down whatever comes to mind without self-judgment or censorship.
  • Freedom: Give yourself the freedom to interpret the prompt in your own way. Remember, prompts are starting points, not rigid guidelines.
  • Experimentation: Experiment with different genres, perspectives, and writing styles. A prompt can be turned into a poem, a short story, or even a script for a play.
  • Consistency: Try to write regularly. Whether you choose to do this daily, weekly, or bi-weekly, consistency can help develop your writing skills.
  • Reflection: Finally, reflect on the prompt and your writing. Consider what worked, what didn’t, and also what you would like to improve in your next piece.

In addition to this, check out our article on what is creative writing .

Tips to Expand on a Prompt

Expanding on a prompt involves transforming a simple idea into a fully developed narrative. Here are a few tips:

  • Character Development: Flesh out your characters. Give them backgrounds, motivations, and flaws to make them more relatable and interesting.
  • Plot Building: Develop a coherent plot. Consider the key events, conflicts, and resolutions that will drive your story forward.
  • Show, Don’t Tell: Show the reader what’s happening through vivid descriptions and actions rather than simply telling them.
  • Dialogue: Use dialogue to reveal character traits and advance the plot. Make sure it’s natural and adds value to your story.
  • Editing: Finally review and revise your work. Look for areas where you can improve clarity, tighten your prose, and also eliminate any inconsistencies or errors.

Editor’s Note : Don’t get rid of old ideas or unfinished works – you never know when looking back over these might spark inspiration or two ideas might mesh to form something cohesive and new!

The Right Prompts Grow Your Skills

By using these strategies, you can take full advantage of creative writing prompts and improve your writing skills. So, whether you’re pursuing a career in creative writing or just looking for a new hobby, these tips can help you unlock your full creative potential.

For more insights on creative writing, check out our articles on creative writing jobs and what you can do with a creative writing degree and how to teach creative writing .

Also, don’t miss our master list of more than 250 journal prompts .

Brooks Manley

Brooks Manley

interesting creative writing prompts

Creative Primer  is a resource on all things journaling, creativity, and productivity. We’ll help you produce better ideas, get more done, and live a more effective life.

My name is Brooks. I do a ton of journaling, like to think I’m a creative (jury’s out), and spend a lot of time thinking about productivity. I hope these resources and product recommendations serve you well. Reach out if you ever want to chat or let me know about a journal I need to check out!

Here’s my favorite journal for 2024: 

the five minute journal

Gratitude Journal Prompts Mindfulness Journal Prompts Journal Prompts for Anxiety Reflective Journal Prompts Healing Journal Prompts Cognitive Behavioral Therapy Journal Prompts Mental Health Journal Prompts ASMR Journal Prompts Manifestation Journal Prompts Self-Care Journal Prompts Morning Journal Prompts Evening Journal Prompts Self-Improvement Journal Prompts Creative Writing Journal Prompts Dream Journal Prompts Relationship Journal Prompts "What If" Journal Prompts New Year Journal Prompts Shadow Work Journal Prompts Journal Prompts for Overcoming Fear Journal Prompts for Dealing with Loss Journal Prompts for Discerning and Decision Making Travel Journal Prompts Fun Journal Prompts

Is a Degree in Creative Writing Worth it?

You may also like, how to get started journaling: the complete beginner’s guide.

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What Animal Represents Creativity?

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The Write Practice

The Only 10 Creative Writing Prompts You Need

by Joe Bunting | 55 comments

You get better at any skill through practice. Prompts are a great way to practice writing (as you might imagine, we're really into practice here), and in this post, I have ten of our best creative writing prompts.

Try a few out, and if you're ready to take the next step in your writing, check out our 100 Best Short Story Ideas .

10 Best Creative Writing Prompts

How To Use These Creative Writing Prompts

At the end of every article on The Write Practice , we include a writing prompt so you can put what you just learned to use immediately. And we invite you to share your writing with our community so you can get feedback on your work.

The Write Practice is more than just a writing blog. It's a writing  workbook , and we think it's the best one on the Internet (of course, we're a bit biased).

One of the most important parts of practice is getting feedback, and we want to help YOU get feedback on your writing. To do that, choose one of the prompts, write for 15 minutes, and then copy and paste your practice into the box at the bottom to post your practice in our forum for feedback. You'll be able to read others' practice and give feedback too.

And if you want even more prompts, you can download our workbook,  14 Prompts , for free here (it's normally, $5.99).

Our Most Popular Creative Writing Prompts

Why not try using two or three of these creative writing prompts in your writing today? Who knows, you might even begin something that becomes your next novel to write or short story. It's happened to Write Practicers before!

Enjoy the writing prompts!

My 3 Favorite Writing Prompts

Write about a time you felt out of place, awkward, and uncomfortable. Try not to focus on your feelings, but project your feelings onto the things around you.

Write about a ghost. How do they feel about the world? What do they see and hear? How did they become a ghost?

  • Your characters haven’t gotten any sleep. Write about why, and how they respond to being sleepless.

Now, let's look at the rest of our favorite prompts! 

1. Grandfathers

Write about a grandfather, maybe your grandfather or your character's grandfather. What memories do you/does your character associate with him?

See the prompt: Grandfathers

Creative Writing Prompts

2. Sleepless

Your characters haven’t gotten any sleep. Write about it.

See the prompt: Sleepless

Creative Writing Prompts

3. Out of Place

See the prompt: Out of Place

Creative Writing Prompts

Write about longing. How does it feel to go about a normal day when your character wants something else?

See the prompt: Longing

Creative Writing Prompts

5. Write About Yourself

Write about yourself.

See the writing prompt: Write About Yourself

Creative Writing Prompts

See the prompt: 3 Reasons to Write About Ghosts

Creative Writing Prompts

7. Road Trip

Write about a road trip. Is your character escaping something? Is your character looking for something? Hint at the thing without telling us while describing what the character sees.

See the writing prompt: Road Trip

Creative Writing Prompts

Write about the morning. What are your character's morning routines? What is special about this  morning?

See the prompt: Morning

Creative Writing Prompts

9. The Beach

Write about the beach. Is your character reflecting on something important that has happened to them? Describe the memory while overlaying the sights, sounds, and smells of the beach onto them.

See the prompt: The Beach

Creative Writing Prompts

Write about autumn. Natural surroundings can bring up old memories and odd feelings. Describe what your character sees, feels, and most of all does.

See the prompt: Autumn

Creative Writing Prompts

Do you use writing prompts in your writing? What is your favorite prompt for ideas? Share in the comments .

For today's practice, choose one of these prompts and write for fifteen minutes . When you're finished with your practice, share it in the Pro Practice Workshop . Don't forget to leave feedback for three other writers. Not a community member yet? Join us ! 

Happy writing!

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Joe Bunting

Joe Bunting is an author and the leader of The Write Practice community. He is also the author of the new book Crowdsourcing Paris , a real life adventure story set in France. It was a #1 New Release on Amazon. Follow him on Instagram (@jhbunting).

Want best-seller coaching? Book Joe here.

proust questionnaire

55 Comments

TheCody

It usually takes the living to confirm you’re dead. That’s why Saginaw didn’t know for months he’d passed. He was a hermit, had lived alone out in the woods for years. He still isn’t sure how or when he died.

After it happened, he continued to get up every morning and head out to the woodpile. Chopping was his release, his balance, his yoga. The repetitive grabbing and swinging and cracking and discarding brought him harmony.

Until the day he realized nothing was happening.

Like every other morning, he grabbed for the axe handle. This time, he noticed his hand passed right through it.

“What the hell?” he said to himself.

He looked down and saw the log cabin through his body, and knew he was dead. Thinking back, he realized he’d probably been dead for awhile. The familiar weight of the axe was a distant memory. He’d been grabbing and swinging and cracking and discarding nothing. He was going through the motions because they brought him peace.

Saginaw wasn’t sure what a ghost was supposed to do with his free time. He tried strolling through the woods and watching animals. They never spooked like he expected. It was boring.

Within days, he realized how much he missed his chopping. He returned home and tried doing it like a mime – empty hand reaching up and striking down on nothing. But now it made him feel useless.

According to the books he’d read during his life, the dead had the ability to interact with the real world. He practiced, trying to control things with his translucent body. He found that he could create a type of wind with his movements. Grass would sway as he ran by and dandelions would shed their cotton if he swooshed his hand over them.

That was the most he could do; wind would never carry his axe. Ghosts couldn’t shed tears but it didn’t stop Saginaw from crying.

He cried until he was angry. In a rage, he jumped up and, growling, grabbed the axe. It flew up with his hands.

“Oh my God!”

His anger vanished and the axe slipped through his fingers. He tried picking it up again, but it refused. Saginaw grew furious at his futility and kicked at the handle. His foot caught the wood and Saginaw realized what was happening.

His raw anger fueled the power to move objects. The only way to do what calmed him was to lose his calm. A total catch-22.

Sag fell to the ground. He’d never thought much about the afterlife. Glancing at the axe, he wondered, as dread lit fire to his insides, exactly where he was.

Giulia Esposito

I like this piece a lot. It’s like a little story. That line, “Chopping was his release, his balance, his yoga.” is very telling, the yoga bit completing it beautifully. Thanks for sharing.

Adelaide Shaw

An interesting take on life after death. What is it? Even when dead, the dead don’t know. A question to be never answered. Adelaide

Dawn Atkin

Brilliant post. I love just starting with a prompt and letting my muse find her way. I could pick any one of these starters and write a series of short pieces. And then voile I have a mini collection to create into a mini e-book. Wow. You’ve just experienced my ‘light-bulb’ moment. I now have an idea for some free giveaways to my potential readers.

After a couple of weeks of dull creative urge, this post has just put a surge of creative current back in my circuit. Thank goodness for that. Thanks Joe for the inspiration.

Joe Bunting

Thanks so much, Dawn. So glad this got your creative juices flowing! 🙂

I’m book marking this page, what a great post.

Here’s what I wrote.

The beach is empty. On a beautiful, perfect day, with a sky of crystal blue, the beach is empty. You can hear the surf slap against the sand, and the cry of gulls overhead. The white, fine sand stretches before you, so bright you have to squint against it. The day is hot, but not sweltering, and you marvel at the privilege of having the beach all to yourself. There is nothing here but, you, the gulls and the sound of the waves. The coconut smell of the lotion you are applying, the red of the beach towel laid down. You wonder if you should have brought a book, if you ought have left the ipod in the car, but then you sit down, watch the waves ebb and tide against the wet sand, and let the song of the sea lull you. A fleeting thought of awe wanders into your mind, at the quiet, extraordinary way that nature has, going on without human observation. The sea will always lap against the shore. The gulls will nest in the brush and seek their dinner from the sea. Even the fish, unseen, will make their homes and hatch eggs, all without anyone watching. It all continues without human eyes upon them, and it is marvellous. And then, in a moment like this, a perfect bubble in time, you might be allowed to witness it. Watch the gull walk along the rocks, its black shiny eye on you, watch the rhythmical way the waves roll and turn. See the crab burrow out from the sand, crawling along the shore.

And then in an instance, the bubble is broken. The moment shattered as the high voice of a child comes laughing into the sand. A couple follows close behind, their voices low. They make their place a distance away from you, but it is too late. The moment of grace with nature is over, the human world has once again inserted itself and the beach is no longer empty.

I love the beach. And I totally appreciate those moments/ times of immersion into the whole wonder of life at lands edge.

And then being slapped back into the moment by the sound and presence of humans.

Nice writing. Thanks for sharing.

Thanks for the feedback.

Catherine

I loved this piece! Your wonderful word choice and clever phrasing helped to create a very vivid image of this gem of a beach, in my mind. It really sucked me in, so much so that I couldn’t help but feel a sharp twinge of sadness and disappointment when the human presence disrupted it all and popped the “perfect bubble in time”. Thank you for sharing such a lovely piece.

Thank you Catherine! That certainly is encouraging, and I appreciate the feedback.

You’re very welcome! I’m glad I could be of some help. Best of luck in all your writing endeavors!

Gregory Walsh

No idea if you will find this a year later.

I was reading this and at first I was like thinking. I have read this before. Crystal blue sky. Generic.

And then I hit the line, “you ought have left the ipod in the car”. And it suddenly became personal.

In Drawing on the Right Side of the Brain, the author talks about how children draw symbols. You say draw a person and they draw a stick figure. For an adult it is generic. They don’t actually look at what they are drawing.

The first part of that you write is like that and then suddenly small details, personal details, start to appear and the piece becomes much more powerful. In my opinion you drop out of the generic symbols of a beach and into your personal subjective view point, and the writing gets much better. More visceral.

For me I would encourage you to go back and either drop or rewrite all the generic parts like crystal blue sky, which sounds symbolic, to something personal.

Leslie Hawthorne

I love this…..

I picked beach.

Soft morning mist Gently rises to kiss Fan of dawn’s rays And slicing through silky southern teal Nullakai’s finger, long dark green Invites me in. Briney effervescence clings To salty diamond necklace Criss-crossing my Summer freckled chest And aquamarine mesmerised My sleepy sea stained eyes Sting to a blur As swollen turquoise curve Breaks this office face Drowning the frown Before it begins I am fresh again fresh This Monday morning.

I’ve been intending to post a comment, but I don’t know much about blank verse or any other poetry other than Japanese short-form poetry such as haiku. What I notice about this poem is that some of the lines read awkwardly because of the lack of an article: a .

“Fan of dawn’s rays,” I think would read better if it were “A fan of dawn’s rays.” Same with “To salty diamond necklace” which would be better as “To a salty diamond necklace.” Again, a missing “a” with “As swollen turquoise curve.” Also, I don’t understand “And aquamarine mesmerised.” .

Otherwise, it’s a beautiful scene and a wonderful way to greet a Monday morning. Adelaide

Thanks Adelaide. Great feedback. Aquamarine should have been two words – aqua marine. I guess I was trying to imply ocean water in a sparklier, gem like way, and taking poetic licence/ freedom by playing with the two words.

Much appreciated. Dawn 🙂

… And I picked ‘morning’.

Dewey pearls lace the graceful dance of understory and spider webs weep fine filaments between sleeping boughs and awakening flowers. In hushed light creamy tones, sun softly shines awake dancing through curls of morning mist. And my body slips into the day, barefoot upon the forest floor.

Early birds sing through the dawning light, their excitement bouncing from leaf to branch. They pause to consider my gaze then flutter on their busy way.

This flesh of mine in autumn beige seeks a deeper walk, into the maze of awakening trees with liquorice trunks black and damp with dew.

Only the forest is talking; the world is yet to yawn and stretch it’s sleepy limbs out of night warmed sheets. I am alone in full company of the promise of a new day.

Strings of purple Hovea buds embrace my passing by, an ephemeral bracelet for one tiny moment, and leave a trace of sparkling silver pearls moist across my wrist. This freshness I bring to my lips. This gift I gently kiss. And I love myself awake.

This sort of reads like a poem, in fact a re-read proves it is! I almost missed that, I was reading too fast. Thank you for sharing.

Hi Giulia It was just a quick 15 minute muse, but yes, now that you’ve pointed it out it does read like poetry. Thanks for that feedback, I can have a play with it and offer it some shape.

Did you like it? Or was it a bit to poetic and slow? I’d appreciate your feedback. Thanks Dawn

Oh, I did like it! I think the structure shape of the poem needs a bit of polish, it might read more smoothly if the lines were shorter. I actually like the languid feel it has, it expresses morning and nature well, how everything seems expanded and slower when you’re really looking at the tiny marvels found in the natural world.

Tea, the Spirit, and a Pen

Grandfather.

He’s not a grandfather and I’m terrified he won’t become one. He’s be a great one. I’m positive.

I really shouldn’t be afraid of hospitals. I grew up in one–Dad’s a doctor. I’m familiar with the tile floors and nurses knowing my name and my nickname. But now I’m afraid. He’s not in scrubs but instead in a gown. A nasty butterfly needle is digging into his skin. They always say it’s a small needle and won’t hurt. Don’t believe them. I’ve had nightmares about this. About driving from Mississippi back home because he’s had a heart attack. He’s never had any heart problems so that fear should be irrational. I should have been praying a seemingly ridiculous prayer. It’s a good thing I was praying even though I didn’t know why. Unknown prayer saved his life. As I sat with him on the hospital bed I felt so strange. I felt 7 and still desperately needing my dad. I can’t do anything without him. I don’t know how to be me without him. At the same time I felt grief for my future children. If he’s not better then those make believe kids will only have my stories to go on. They’d never believe me when I told them their grandfather was the greatest man to ever live.

My brothers have stories. Absolutely hilarious stories of my dad that they both recounted on the way to the hospital room. As they did I realized I don’t have stories. I have facts, subjects, events. I have moments.

-Reading Harry Potter together and standing in line for each book release.

-Agatha Christie -Keeping Up Appearances -“I think I’ll go pay that bill.” “You know what I think you should do?” “What?” “Go pay that bill.” “Oh my gosh you’re brilliant!” -We are both left handed.

-How to swing a bat.

-How to replace a door.

-How to drive.

-Telling me his “M.D.” stood for “My Daddy.” -His Martin acoustic guitar -The smell of cedar wood and rain when he made duck calls in the basement.

I don’t have hilarious stories of my dad I just have a lot of lessons. He taught me in every moment we spent together. Those moments were hilarious but I don’t think I could recreate them to become stories.

I want him to be a grandfather because I didn’t know mine. He has to show my children how amazing he is because how could I possibly put that into words? He’s my very best friend. He thinks I can do absolutely anything. I know that I can because a quick phone call to him clears up any questions.

He always has the answers.

I need him to be a grandfather because I need him to keep being my dad.

EndlessExposition

That was wonderful, simultaneously heartwarming and heartbreaking. I love it

Thank you!!!

A warm tribute to your father. I hope he got well. adelaide

Jenna Orchard

I really love this piece.

I chose morning as it was a few weeks ago up here in upstate NY.

FROM MY WINDOW

Spring is gearing up. At the far end of the front yard, where it rises to meet the road, crocus splash yellow, white and purple. Stems on the lilac bushes are knobby with green tipped leaf buds. Daffodils, some just poking through the soil, some already at their full height with swollen flower buds ready to burst. Through the open window the breeze is damp,ripe with the fragrance of wet dirt, last year’s leaves and manure from the field around the bend. There are busy calls from unseen birds and announcing honks from another gaggle of geese. There is, in this moment, everything that there is.

coffee brewing the anticipation before the first sip

Lovely. I can almost feel myself standing beside you at the window. Great use of all the senses Adelaide. Thanks for sharing. Dawn

This post is in response to OUT OF PLACE

A sorority beach house. Full of surging hormones and testosterone from the young women and the visiting frat boys who have a house down the road. Some girls have wandered there to see what’s going on. Most likely the same things that are going on here.

It’s Easter Break at Laguna Beach. A week of fun, fun, fun! For some. For most. But not for the dark haired girl trying to play poker with two other girls and three guys. Trying to play because she is new at the game and loses every hand. She also loses at the witty, sexually laced repartee between the other five players. After four games and down to her last 10 pennies, she quits. It is not for her this game. The entire experience is not for her. She looks over the party goers. Beer, kisses and gropes are exchanged in corners. What goes on in the closed bedrooms is better not seen.

She takes a beer, her first, and her cigarettes and goes out to the beach. This is what she came for: the beach, swimming during the day, reading what she didn’t have time for when crushed with class assignments, girl talk with a few friends. Even that is a disappointment as the girl talk usually turns to boys, a topic which is foreign to her experience.

She’ll lie when she goes back to her classes. She’ll say the week was fun, a blast. Yeah. Partying every night. At least, she’ll have a tan to prove she was there.

Lovely demonstration of the odd teen, who out of place cannot even bare to bow to peer pressure. I liked the ending where she decided to lie to fit in.

Can you please tell me what a ‘sorority’ house is exactly. (I’m not from the USA.)

Thanks for sharing Dawn

Many colleges have sororities, a club of sorts to which candidates are invited to be a member. In some colleges they can be very snobbish, at least that was the situation when I was in college. My college, a small woman’s college, was more democratic, in that a student chose the soriety she wanted and was accepted in it. There was no voting on who could come in and who could not. Bigger colleges have special housing for sororities and fraternities (the male equvilent of sororities).I don’t know what other sororities did, but the ones at my college, in addition to organizing teas, parties, picnics, etc., had a commitment to do some social work for the community. Being a Catholic college we gave Catechism lessons to young childdren in poor parishes where there was a shortage of teachers to give these lessons after school

A sororiety beach house is just that: a house at the beach which the sorority rents for a time, the rent being paid for by charging a fee for each girl who wants to spend the week there. Easter week was usually a time of letting loose

I hope this answers your question. Adelaide

Thanks again Joe Due to the inspiration of this post and it’s kickstarting my creative flow (I’ve been editing my first novel), I have decided to do the NaNo July Camp.

Using some of the above prompts I am aiming to complete a collection of short stories, prose and poetic interludes. My goal is only 10,000 words. This will give me time to edit, shape and tease out detail. It’s winter in my part of the world. A cosy time to write beside the fireplace.

A brief synopsis: A collection of short stories, prose and poetic interludes that reflect on the shadows, woods, winds and ocean waves of a south coast winter.

Where nature walks deep into the rhythm of this human’s hibernating season and beckons her into conversation with looming clouds, long shadows and the low breathing reach of winter sun.

That she may see the beauty that dances between the tempest winter weather sweeping the landscape and her quiet resting inner world.

Of course I’ll still be visiting TWP daily. For ongoing inspiration and community to share with. Cheers Dawn 🙂

What a great, stimulating post! I chose the ‘Morning’ prompt.

My eyes slowly creaked open, only to squint in the sun beam that had smacked my face, arousing me from sleep. But I hadn’t been asleep…had I? I couldn’t be sure. As I groggily sat up in bed, a chill ran down my spine as the air conditioning kissed my back-drenched with sweat. The next thing I took notice of was the pounding in my chest. It seemed that my heart had been beating wildly only moments ago, and now it was doing its best to resume normality. Yet that wasn’t all. There was a dull, aching that had come with the wild beating. In my mind’s eye, I could see a face, slowly fading from sight. It’s features were slowly becoming more and more obscure. Who was he? Why did I care? Hardly a minute had passed before the man’s face vanished from my mind entirely. Birds began to chirp cheerily outside my window, and without knowing why- a tear slipped down my face and darkened the baby blue sheets. I struggled to search my mind for the image of his face once more, but there was nothing. There never would be- except for the lone tear that spotted my sheets.

disqus_wXut3RRdNv

Great start that draws your readers in; beginning of the day, mysterious dream image evoking intense emotion, loved it Catherine!

jaime

This is amazing.

Dizzy

I chose the sleepless prompt. I kind of went deeper than I was trying to.

She tossed. She turned. Her eyes wouldn’t stay shut. They would stay open either. She blinked. The dark of the night filled the room, and the smell of dust covered everything. The blankets on the bed were everywhere, and one the pillows had been thrown on the floor. The rest of the bedroom looked neat, beside the dark and glooming aroma.

She had a specific person on her mind. Someone she had been wondering about for awhile. She didn’t have a crush, nor were they enemies. The person was just very… normal. She tried getting her mind on something else, only to be reminded on him somehow. The smell was like him, the smell of the room.

She turned again, thinking of what happened that day. He had asked her a strange question; one that’s wasn’t like trying to know someone. It was just strange. “Do you like country music?” His words echoed in her mind. She had said no, and then he had left, without any sign.

He wasn’t exactly a normal boy, but he wasn’t weird either. He wears black often, but sometimes he’ll wear pink. His hair is often messy, but sometimes, for no reason, it’s perfectly neat. He manly sticks to keeping quiet, but sometimes, he’s the most active in class.

youressayhelper

Thank’s, it is very creative! Besides I found this writing prompts tool http://youressayhelper.com/writing-prompt-generator.html very helpful!

Found this post and took a stab at the grandfather prompt.

I never knew my grandfather.

A man walks towards me. Top hat, suit. Black against white mist. He is smiling. He is a handsome man. He does not take a step but if he did they would be long strides. Purposeful, directed. He is tall but does not tower over me. And he is looking at me. Not at me, not through me. At me. At the deep sliver of me before the echoes of memory. And smiling. A smile that reaches from ear to ear. A smile that starts in the gut and ends in the eyes. A smile that leaves me quivering inside my own skin. He knows my secret.

How does he know. What if he tells someone.

He sees me. No, he sees him. The lie of lies. He sees past the lies. He sees the lies I tell myself and he laughs. A laugh from the belly that shakes the mists he reaches out from.

Small lies. Self-pity. Worthlessness. Fear. His eyes move past them, not even bothering to swat them aside.

Something rests on my heart.

Brigitte

I was inspired when I read this post and I immediately made a story. However, I came up with my own prompt: Jealousy.

I keep finding the wrong in her brown capturing eyes, hoping to see the darkness she has yet to reveal. I keep finding the treason in her refined movements, the plan in her bright smile, the sting in her sweet words yet I couldn’t find any. She is the sun, and everyone is flocking around her warmth but I am blinded. My eyes sting and my breath caught within my throat, afraid they will notice the insecurities blowing in and out of my lungs. Afraid to move for they might see the urge to block their words worshiping her, slowly pressing my stomach, burying me into the depths of the dark place I wouldn’t want to be in but I’m still falling, falling, and falling. I have to avoid the mirror and the vision of myself beside her, comparing and losing. I have to refrain from looking as it would pour fuel into the fire and I have to stay away, far away from her. She pleaded why am I keeping distance, as I remember how my stomach churns every time they prefer her, how I’m always in the shadow of her glow, and I retreated leaving her groping in the dark for an answer, like how I’m pathetically groping for salvation. I cry that night chanting apologies; I am lost and I have to find myself, hoping to be stable and solid so my molecules will not easily drown in hers. I am me and she is her as they point my parts apart from her. A heterogeneous system, as one, as sisters, as best friends. But not today. Today I’m lying on the thorns of my selfish inexcusable reasons devoid of any strength to get up. Today, I’m still avoiding the traces of her on my notebook and my map. I’m sorry, you are the best and the worst that has happened to me and for that pitiful reason, today at 10 am in our small warm coffee shop I will not be there. I will be somewhere else, a place cowards run off to, somewhere you wouldn’t have to go.

——-your undeserving best friend: jealousy

sherpeace

I just re-posted a post on my FB page about using images to help you write! https://www.facebook.com/A-Page-A-Day-Lets-all-write-just-one-page-a-day-103970129720405/?fref=ts I used many images to write my novel. El Salvador’s civil war was the most photographed war in history. I bet it still is! Thanks for a great post! Sherrie Sherrie Miranda’s historically based, coming of age, Adventure novel “Secrets & Lies in El Salvador” is about an American girl in war-torn El Salvador: http://tinyurl.com/klxbt4y Her husband made a video for her novel. He wrote the song too: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=P11Ch5chkAc

SilentPsyche

“Morning”

The sun shone through a small gap where the panels of curtains met. Usually the curtains did their job and blacked out any light, but the angle she laid in bed today was the perfect place for the sun to shine right on her face. It beamed like a laser through her eyelids. She turned over in bed attempting to evade the warm light. Her subconscious knew something wasn’t right. She bolted upright and scrambled to find her phone which served as her alarm clock. Dead. What time is it? She ran to the kitchen to look at the clock on the oven. It was blinking 3:38. This can’t be right, the sun is shining bright as noon. The power must have gone off sometime during the night. She hurried back to her room to plug in her phone. It seemed like hours as she waited for it to charge enough to turn on. Panic started to set in. Finally! The iPhone beamed back to life. The clock on the home screen read 7:22. She was late. Late for her first day at her new job.

Bethany

I really enjoy creative writing and I hope to get better at it. I always have different ideas running through my head but I never actually put them on paper. I chose the “Morning” prompt and I feel like this is actually pretty good! Morning The warm rays of the sun filled the room as Vaughn lay their asleep. It was about 10:45 in the morning, and Vaughn was still exhausted from yesterday’s job searching. He had been fired about three months ago and has been budgeting his money the best he can. Natalie, his girlfriend, has been giving him small amounts of money here and there. Bzzz, Bzzz…his phone starts ringing, causing him to wake up from his deep sleep. His violet eyes scan the screen of the phone. Vaughn sighs, noticing it’s a text from Natalie. He puts the phone back where it was and snuggled back under the warm covers. As soon as his platinum hair hit the pillow- bzzz, bzzz, bzzz…this time it was a call. Vaughn released a sigh of annoyance, noticing it was Natalie again. “Hello”, he answered. “Vaughn I cannot believe you forgot again, you know as much as I help you, you could be a little better at remembering things”, Natalie yelled through the speaker. “What are you talking about, Natalie, we didn’t plan anything today! You said you were tired” Vaughn explained, his patients wearing thin. “I just texted you and said ‘Meet me at the new café’, I’ve been waiting here for thirty minutes and you’re still not here!”, Natalie whined. “Okay, okay, I’m on my way Naty” Vaughn threw the covers off himself and started getting ready. He wouldn’t have heard the end of it if he didn’t go. While he was pacing through his apartment, he knocked down a picture frame. He bent down and froze when he saw the picture it displayed. It was him standing beside a girl with brown hair and tan skin. Her smile was gentle and calming and her violet eyes sparkled with joy. Vaughn gently held the frame and whispered,” Cerene…”. *Flashback to High School* “Will we still talk like we are now, Florida seems like its pretty far”, Vaughn asked nervously. “Of course we will, silly, you’re my best friend!” Cerene Exclaimed. Vaughn and Cerene had been friends since elementary school. They were always together. Unfortunately, Cerene’s family traveled a lot. Her father’s job required them to move from time time. Vaughn didn’t like this at all, sure he had other friends, but they weren’t his best friends like Cerene was. She was always there for him, even when he was sick, she would bring tea, movies, or just sit and talk with him. Everyone at school thought the two liked each other. It was true Vaughn liked Cerene but he never knew how she felt about him. Cerene was leaving a week after graduation. As the day grew closer, Vaughn noticed that Cerene just wasn’t her cheery self anymore. Instead she seemed depressed and disconnected from the world. He’d find her staring off into the distance a lot like she was thinking. Three days before she was supposed to leave, Vaughn got a call from Cerene. “Hey, Cerene, how’s it goin’”, Vaughn answered. “Hey Vanya…I..um..I have some bad news” Cerene explained. Her voice was shaking, Vaughn wondered if she was about to cry. “What is it, Cerene” he asked, worried. “I’m…leaving earlier than I thought”, she said sadly. “But why, what happened to te week after graduation” he pleaded. “I’m sorry, Vanya, I tried to get extra time but my father said we have to leave earlier than expected!” she exclaimed. “Its okay, Cerene, its not your fault, but can I see you before you leave, please”, Vaughn asked with hope. “Of course, silly, you’re my best friend!” Vaughn snapped out of day dream when his phone started vibrating again.

Bookie

Today was a fresh day, leaves crunching beneath my boots and the sun beams stretching out for a new morning. I usually had these walks by myself, oftenly I’d get looks from my friends of concern and they had always questioned me as to why I never invited them along. But me and the Autumn season are meant to be alone, we’re meant to be one.

My nose was red, and I had an occasional case of the sniffles not that I was really bothered about it. Nevertheless it might not be winter but the whispy breeze, and the coldness of the astomophere was indicating that it was near. I paused at the tree, in the middle of a meadow. A meadow packed with tall soft grass, flowers that were in the process of blooming and the silent birds that peacefully flew on by in the bright clear sky. I parked myself down, my back resting on the bark of the old tree my knees tucked into my chest while my arms rested on top of my knees.

I felt my hair blow with the sudden blast of wind, like waves of an ocean as I felt tears prick in the corners of my eyes. Truth is, Autumn was the sad season. The season where I lost my younger brother, Despite his falling sand the countless times he was called names and picked on by the other children, he always managed to smile and laugh with me, which you wouldn’t expect from a brother and sister. After he passed I always came here, somehow his presence lingered near. My eyelids eventually gave away to the tiredness from my sobs, my throat was sore, so just as I fell asleep, a small murmered whispered in my ear, “Sweet dreams, Sis.” And a small smile creeped onto my face, as well as the last falling tear.

This is lovely. I believe it to be true.

adi

Beach Do you remember the last year when I called you and requested to see me at Clifton beach in the evening. You might have forget that call but tell me have you forgot that last meeting also? You might have forgot that meeting but tell me have you forgot our last dance on the sand. The sun was setting and the sky turned red as if it had not slept since many last nights. Do you remember when your left foot was kissing my right foot and your right my my left. Do you remember when we danced on the music of sew waves. Do you remember when a wave touched our feet took the sand from beneath our feet away with it. Since that day I am hanging in the air. I don’t have anything to place my feet on.

John Rodgers

Using the prompt, “Road trip” and this is what I came up with.

11:00 in the morning, my wheelchair is securely locked in the mechanism. I’m semi nervous and excited, watching out the window as the bus pulls away from the depot. Out the corner of my eye, I notice one seat up and over, a young boy is looking back at me. I give him a quick smile before he turns to his mother. She looks back to me then nudges his shoulder. A scolding expression on her face and speaking quietly to him him. I don’t hear what is said but I’m sure I can imagine her words. Parents, how they stifle a child’s curiosity. 2:45 in the afternoon, the lift is shaky as I ride it down off the bus. I’m glad to have all four wheels on the ground. I have a couple of minutes before I have to board the next bus. Just enough time for a quick bathroom break. I’m passing the young boy again. We make eye contact. His mother is busy scrounging through her purse. Oops, I bet she lost her tickets. I pop a wheely as I ride pass the boy and a bright smile lights up his young face as he watches. I turn back around, looking at him and smile. Catching a glimpse of me, his mother grabs his hand and pulls him along toward a customer desk. My eyes are still on the little boy as he looks back to me once more. I quickly give him a thumbs up, then ride off toward the rest room, wheeling on my back tires. 3:00, I’d just exited the bathroom. Time to board. The bus will be leaving in 10 minutes bound for Philadelphia. I see the boy and his mother once more as I wheel myself toward the bus’s lift. Catching the mother’s eye, I remark, “He’s a bright young boy. He’s very inquisitive, nurture him well.” She manages a curt smile and hurriedly walks toward her destination and I can’t help to watch them as the lift raises me up to enter the bus. I can’t help but wonder about the man he’ll grow up to be.

robert

this story really made my day and i would honestly consider you to become an author. I will forever cherish this story as i can relate being wheelchair bound and now have been inspired to “pop a wheely” which i will continue to do in my every day life.You are the reason i wake up in the morning

tammy

Robert i take a massive offence to this as i am also “wheelchair bound” and like to “pop a wheely” from time to time and would highly recommend deleting your comment

AJ

As a fellow wheeler, I too take great pride in ‘popping wheelies’ whenever free time shows face in my schedule. The W.A. society (wheelers anonymous) are a faction of like minded individuals who all have a great passion for the art that is ‘paralytic parkour’. I come from a long line of wheelers, must be in my genes-sorry future kids L0L! Not a singe soul has stood tall in my family for many of years now, everyday’s a struggle, all worse than the last, but my strong will and high admiration pulls me through with a little grass from my friends if you get what i mean 😉 anyway, maybe we could arrange a date sometime soon, ill send you my details for future reference.

Lance

Hey AJ, how you doing? cause im doing swell BUT i couldn’t help wondering about this faction im hearing of, i have some gnarly brain storms about a new stunt wheelchair as ive been having a lot of trouble going down the half pipe at my local skate park, i seem to be falling out my wheelchair every time i go down and cant get back up. approximately 1/3 paralytic parkourers die due to faulty wheelchairs, i hope you take my brain storms into deep consideration.

sincerely Lance.

Angus IV

WOW lance you seem to have caught my attention because this is a everyday common struggle of most wheelers. We wheelers have to stick together and have each others backs even when we are both struggling to find our feet quite literally! the only thing i have to live on is hope and you know what they say about hope ‘breeds eternal misery’ .

Rebecca Alcozer

I found myself choosing the Grandfather Prompt. I felt my eyelids getting heavier as I placed my head on the car window. It was a quiet day. Even the sound of my mother and Grandmother talking seemed soothing. I was quickly brought back to reality by a voice message on my mother’s phone, from my grandfather. “I need..help…a hospital. Please come..” ,he whispered, then silence. I felt my heart drop to my stomach as his voice echoed in my head. I froze. I didn’t move. I couldn’t move… All I could do was sit there, listening to my mother trying to hold back her tears as she was speeding on a busy street. Only my younger sister shaking my arm snapped me back. “What’s going on? Why are they crying?”, she desperately asked. In that second, it hit me. We might not get there in time. I tried to hold back my tears, I tried to be strong, but I couldn’t. I could hear my heart pounding louder than my thoughts. I felt my temperature rising by the second. My tears sliding down my chin. The only thing I resorted to doing was pray. “Please, not today. I’m not ready. Not this soon, let me hug him one more time. Don’t take him from me yet.”,I prayed in silence. Then the thoughts began to come. What was the last thing I said to him? When is the last time I told him I loved him? My thoughts were interrupted as my mother slammed the breaks on my grandparents driveway. “Stay in the car.” ,my mother snapped as she ran out. The wait seemed endless. Everything felt unreal. I felt helpless. Was he dead? This can’t be how he leaves. I didn’t get to say goodbye. No more fighting over the t.v controller with him again. We would never share a piece of cherry pie again. I’ll never get another poem from him. My attention quickly turned to the door as my sister began to cry, as she realized the situation. My mother and grandmother came out struggling to carry my grandfather. I didn’t know what to think. “Where’s the nearest E.R?” , I hear my grandma yell. We made it on time. There seemed to be a weight off my chest. My grandfathers even SLIGHT breathing, was prayers answered.

john sefcik

After high school graduation we begin our journey, going to college; going here and there on vacations; work and exactly where we’re going isn’t clear. We can see down the road aways, sometime to the next turn, but our destination remains obscure. Often there are intersections and we glare down the different routes and make a choice and we’re off again. Job offers come and we change directions. We meet people and that may take is off in yet other directions. Then we start a family and the road seems to be long and hard. We wonder if we’re going down the right road. Will we get to nice place in the end? Will there be food and shelter waiting for us? Or will we run out of gas and be stranded, walking down the road? But we keep moving. Eventually the kids grow up and are in college and the road seems to open up and the scenery gets better. We start seeing what we think is our destination in the distance and our focus lands there. Are we going to make it – or can’t wait to make it. More intersections seem to keep the goal at bay, but we continue on. Kids are on their own road and we see them taking some of the same roads we travelled. But we make a turn and the goal is in view. We think back about the trip and how frustrating it was at the time and realize that it went by way too quickly. We long to be able to keep the trip going, taking in more sights and doing things that we didn’t stop and bother with previously. But we arrive as the sun sets. Out of gas. Cold. Hungry. Tired. And waiting for us is a huge lodge with a warm fireplace burning. A huge meal has been prepared. There is laughter, music and lots of people, many of whom we’ve known along the trip. It’s been a wonderful experience. And the talk is about the next road trip.

Deb

I absolutely love these! I just read a post about the benefits of using creative writing prompts and went looking for some to get started. Thanks so much for these!

roni

Its been days since Ronda landed, maybe tonight she will get some sleep. Jet Lag has been a nightmare. Started the night befor the flight, woke up every 2-3 hours and could not fall back to sleep. Ronka always stresses before trips. Really she stresses before everything. The 13 hours on the plane were completely sleepless as well. Ronka rarely ever can sleep on a plane. She brought a book but did not read. She had some podcasts but didnt listen. Her focus was not good enough for any of those. Not even for random thoughts. She watched a few movies but probably doesnt remember much. At the last 2 hours she found Remi Cube on the airplane entertainment system and thats where she finally found solace. Went into a frenzy of playing until the plane landed. Ronda does most things in a frenzy. Now she’s in her parents home. Day 3 and she hasnt got much sleep. On the surface things are ok. She hasnt spiraled out of control yet. But deep inside she can feel the shift… She is not fully ok. Getting a little more grumpy and restless by the minute. A big total eclipse is happening in a few hours. The energies must be affecting. Ronda is always greatly affected with the universe arround her. The weather, The full Moons, the astrological signs. Ronda needs a good night sleep. A few good night sleeps. She needs to get back on track. She’s been doing relatively good lately.

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Love To Write? Check Out These 51 Creative Writing Prompts For Adults

An essential part of being a writer is daily practice —even if that practice is only a few minutes.

And even when the results are less inspired than you hoped. 

As long as you’re committed to building a writing habit and practicing your craft, you’re a writer—not just an “aspiring” one.

Sometimes, all you need is a generous supply of fun writing prompts for adults to get you started. 

We’re happy to help with that. 

What Are Some Interesting Writing Prompts? 

The best, most effective writing topics for adults are those you enjoy. They should stimulate your memory and imagination and create connections in the mind. All you need to do at that moment is to let the words flow onto the page.

Writing prompts can do this in one or more of the following ways: 

  • Remind you of a significant event in your own life; 
  • Trigger a powerful emotion about a particular event or relationship; 
  • Connect to a meaningful experience you’d like to dwell on for a bit;
  • Connect to other disjointed details in your memory; 
  • Relate to universal themes you’d like to explore. 

How You Can Use Daily Writing Prompts for Adults 

Here are a few ideas for using adult writing prompts: 

  • Start a creating writing journal using these as daily prompts ; 
  • Take one prompt and break it down into smaller installments; 
  • Start a creative writing group and share 1-3 prompts per week;
  • Play music that fits the mood of a particular prompt; 
  • Set a timer and commit to writing for at least five minutes straight. 

The best ideas for using the list of prompts below are those you’ll actually use and enjoy. 

51 Creative Writing Prompts for Adults 

Read through the following list of adult writing prompts and let your imagination respond to each one. Some will get your mind going more quickly than others. Some will have a stronger effect at different times. 

You’re welcome to keep this whole list handy or make a smaller list with your favorites. 

1. You’ve just been jolted out of a dream you’d give all your worldly possessions to return to. What was it about?

2. Someone you look up to makes an unexpected and hurtful remark about your body. What goes through your head, and how do you respond? 

3. You’re alone at night in your apartment in the city, and the doorbell starts ringing repeatedly. You look through the peephole and… 

4. You write an anonymous advice column and one day discover the unintended consequences of advice you thought was helpful. 

5. By day, you’re a responsible, if reclusive, college student. By night, you fly over your city as a dragon.  

writing prompts for adults

6. On the advice of her therapist, you write about a character from her dreams, and they show up at your door. 

7. Your significant other interrupts your work one day to say, “I need to tell you something.” What goes through your mind?

8. You don’t really want a pet, but when a friendly stray follows you home, your tender heart wins out and you let it in.

9. You meet someone with whom you feel not only safe but wanted and cherished. One day you catch them with someone else. 

10. You wake up in a different place lying next to someone else and, for some reason you feel more at home. But which life is real?

11. You’re a few short hours away from facing your worst nightmare. What is it, and how do you prepare?

12. You wake up with a headache in a coffin-size box and hear voices outside it speaking a different language. 

13. What comes to mind with the words, “What were you thinking ?”

14. For some reason, everyone is giving you strange looks and tip-toeing around you. 

15. Figures. Just when you get good at coding, the internet shuts down — everywhere. 

16. You were digging in your yard when you found it. And you fully intend to keep it secret.

17. You’re comfortable with anonymity, so it’s unsettling when, one day, everyone you meet acts as if they’ve known you all your life.

18. Your spouse thinks you’re leaving for work, but you know the truth. Maybe, one day, you’ll tell them—if you survive today. 

19. Someone slips a note underneath your apartment door. You unfold it to find a phone number and a brief, urgent message. 

20. Your spouse asks if you’re interested in trying something different with your marriage. And it’s not fantasy role-play. 

21. You wake up one day, and everyone seems shocked to see you alive. You look in the mirror and understand why. 

22. You wake up in the body of a famous historical figure you’ve been studying. How does your day go?

23. Ever since the accident, you’ve been hearing voices—not all the time but often when it’s least convenient. 

writing prompts for adults

24. You show up alone at an old friend’s funeral to pay your respects, but when you reach the coffin, the face you see is your own. 

25. You’ve always taken comfort in the presence of your own shadow, but it’s started taking on a life of its own. 

26. You have one day to do whatever you want without any consequences. What do you do?

27. You’re visited one night by the disembodied spirit of someone you know (still living). Why do they visit you?

28. You’re on the worst vacation ever. And you’re about to do something crazy to change it for the better. 

29. An evil genius hires you as his personal assistant. Your first day on the job is life-changing. 

30. Your life is the subject of a favorite TV show. Describe your character and write about an important scene of your own making. 

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31. You find a high-paying job doing something you love. But when your devoutly religious relatives ask what you do, you lie.  

32. Your parents have just revealed a family secret they hoped they’d never have to tell you. You’re about to share it with your partner.

33. You’re in couple’s therapy, and the therapist suggests something you initially consider outrageous but are then… surprisingly open to it. 

34. Write about a time when you had to hide from someone. Were you protecting yourself—or them?

35. Write about an animal you identify with and describe the traits you share with them—or wish you shared. 

36. Describe a moment when someone you were once attracted to tried to intimidate you, and you turned the tables. 

37. Write about how different your life might be if, back at a pivotal moment in your life, you’d taken a different turn. 

38. Write about a relationship that taught you an important lesson and what you would tell that person now. 

39. You inherit a house and discover a secret door leading to a surprise your deceased relative clearly knew about. 

40. You meet and become friends with someone who’s the living equivalent of a favorite character from a novel you’ve read—or written. 

41. You become famous, and your life changes overnight. Write about how it happens and what it leads to. 

42. Create a powerful antagonist character and describe them. What kind of relationship would you or your protagonist have with them?

43. “She looked at me as if seeing me for the first time. When she finally spoke, she said… “

44. You did or said something that has left your family and friends speechless with shock. What is it, and what are the consequences?

45. You have this eerie feeling someone or something is following you home. You’re right. What or who is it, and what do they want?

46. You make a birthday wish, and it comes true. Describe what happens as a result. 

47. You stand up to a bully, and the results are mixed. What happens?

48. You finally get your dream job (or gig), and then you learn something about it that changes everything. 

49. For the first time in your life, you feel free to express your thoughts and see them as worth expressing. Why?

50. You write a book that becomes a bestseller , and someone you meet tells you it’s their new favorite. Describe the book and your fan. 

51. You get a dream job, and your boss turns out to be something other than human. The problem? You’re falling hard for them. 

Now that you’ve looked through all the above writing prompts, which ones stood out for you as favorites? And which will you use today? 

There are times when writers struggle to start their writing pieces. On that note, there is plenty of writing prompts for adults and in this post, there are 51 prompts to choose from.

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Home » Blog » 140 Creative Writing Prompts For Adults

140 Creative Writing Prompts For Adults

interesting creative writing prompts

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Learning how to become a better writer includes knowing how to come up with a solid idea. With so many elements to consider when starting your novel, the plot itself may begin to slip away from you. Use these creative writing prompts for adults to get you started on the right path to a successful story and suffer from writer’s block for the last time. .

This list of writing prompts for adults can be taken and used in any way you want. Details can be changed and characters can be added or removed.

They are meant to be a fun way to get your creativity flowing and your next story developing. For even more writing ideas, check out the  writing prompt generator . Here, you will find 500+ prompts of all kinds that will give you some ideas.  Take control of that blank page and create something awesome. 

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Dramatic Writing Prompts for Adults

Nothing beats some good old-fashioned drama once in a while. You can turn these writing prompts into a dramatic love story , an exciting short story, or morph them into a different genre. How you use them is up to you.

For a novel that is specifically romance, we have created an exclusive list of exciting and genre-bending romance writing prompts .

  • A young boy discovers that he is the only adopted child among his four siblings. Feeling confused and betrayed, he runs away to find his birth parents. After two months on the road, he runs out of money and still hasn’t found them. Does he go home? Or does he continue his quest?
  • Two couples are fueding and haven’t spoken in years. It is discovered that their two children have become best friends at school, and they want a playdate. Will this increase tension between them or lead to reconciliation?
  • Identical twins are attending the same college. They switch places and take each other’s classes depending on strengths and weaknesses. They’ve gotten away with it for two years until their observant professor of a father is transferred to the school they attend.
  • Two childhood best friends stopped talking after a huge fight in high school. Five years later, they find themselves sitting next to each other on the same 16-hour international flight.
  • Write about a passionate romance that crosses religions.
  • He’s only been in office for a year. He is already being tempted by a corrupt group of criminals who want him to sabotage a series of public safety projects in exchange for funding his entire reelection campaign.
  • Your main character is being offered a promotion from the high school principal to the district director. Sadly, she knows her replacement will cut funding to all of the art programs. How does she manage the situation?
  • A high profile general learns that the opposing army will surrender if he hands himself over. Will he prioritize his own safety, or sacrifice himself for his country?
  • Write about a successful businesswoman who has built herself from the ground up. The business is suddenly threatened by the son of a rich local contractor who started a similar business out of boredom.
  • A successful lawyer knows that his client is guilty of the murder for which he has been charged. He is a good liar and could easily win the case. The case is getting constant media coverage and would guarantee him making partner at his firm.
  • Your main character has lived a sheltered, isolated life. When their delusional and overbearing father dies. They are thrown into the real world and unsure of how to cope.
  • The doorbell rings and your character answers it – finding nothing but an envelope with nothing on it. They open it and follow the instructions to attend a secret underground event. Afterward, they become a part of a huge resistance that the rest of the world knows nothing about.
  • After a family member’s funeral, you arrive home to a stranger on your doorstep claiming the person is not really dead. The funeral was open-casket.
  • It is your character’s wedding day. While the vows are being said, someone from the crowd yells “I object!”
  • A huge storm has stopped traffic. Your character is stuck in the car with someone for an unknown amount of time. The person chooses this moment to confess their undying love. The feeling is not mutual.
  • Your character finds an old, disposable camera on the ground. Feeling, they get the photos developed. What they see tells an unsettling story.
  • Two old friends are reminiscing on a prominent and life-changing event. They have very different memories from that day.
  • Your main character is a world-traveling nature photographer. She stumbles upon a small tribe of indigenous people who have found the cure for all cancer in a small local plant.
  • A young man has been homeschooled all his life and is ready to start college. An attack on his small home town has him being drafted into the army. He is away from home for the first time ever and terrified. However, he becomes a key strategist due to his unique perspective and undiscovered scientific talents.
  • A middle-aged man is tired of his career in a corporate office. He takes all his vacation and sick days at once for an excursion in the Appalachian Mountains. Everything is fine until a blizzard hits.
  • A shy and reserved web designer thinks she has found the man of her dreams online. She is actually being catfished by a competing company who wants to get information from her.
  • A man and women work for two neighboring, rival fast food companies. They always take their lunch breaks together on the bench right in the middle of the two.
  • An ongoing murder investigation takes an unexpected turn when it is discovered that a prolific group of corrupted police officers were behind the whole thing.
  • A television star is renowned and respected for his “method” acting. He only interviews or appears on TV in character. But, this is because he doesn’t have a personality outside of his three most famous characters.
  • A professional gymnast is under fire for her supposed use of performance-enhancing steroids. She leaked the story herself to draw attention away from the fact that she is the leader of a high-profile drug ring.
  • An older couple on the brink of retirement keeps their life savings in the pages of the books in their home. They are just about to start looking for a retirement home to live in when a fire destroys their house and their cash.

Tips for Writing Drama

  • Drama is usually character driven , so make use of both your round and flat characters .
  • Introduce the conflict right away and keep it prominent. A drama will thrive off conflict.
  • Don’t let the resolution come easily.
  • Don’t be afraid to kill characters and write difficult situations.
  • Always show, don’t tell.

Supernatural Writing Prompts for Adults

Supernatural stories are popular. The world is in love with vampires. Write something interesting and unique enough, you might be writing their next favorite book. Use these supernatural story starters for your basic premise. 

  • On her 16th birthday, your main character miraculously survives a deadly car crash without a scratch. Later that week, she watches as a small scratch heals and disappears right before her eyes. Where did this new power come from and what will she do with it?
  • There is an elite society of high education that wants to test a new drug. They give it to highly gifted students, and it allows them to stay awake for 48 hours and record everything they see, heard, and feel in that time. Unfortunately, some unexpected side effects set in two weeks later.
  • A middle-aged man is the only one in his famous and high-profile family without a superpower. The local police rely on his super-powered family to help them catch and fight crime. However, the powers are failing them during a specific investigation. Your protagonists “normal” perspective might just save the day.
  • Your main character suffers a terrible concussion. After recovering, they cannot control the vivid nightmares about the accident. However, they can also take images from their mind and project them into the real world. Doctors think they are crazy and keep them heavily sedated.
  • Write about a world where technology has given animals the ability to speak.

Tips for Writing Supernatural Stories

  • Setting the story in the real world will make your supernatural species more believable.
  • Create the origins of your species and supernatural characters.
  • Create the physical limitations for your species and beings.
  • Avoid the cliches of the genre.
  • Understand your reasons for using supernatural creatures. You shouldn’t be writing them in simply due to their popularity.

Thriller Writing Prompts for Adults

Thrillers can come in many forms and can be incorporated with many genres. Regardless of the details though, they are always meant to excite. Suspense and tension are crucial – it’s always more fun when you don’t know. Writing a good thriller requires a strong set of writing skills. These prompts will give you a good base. If you think you need to improve, try some writing exercises.

If your thriller can get hearts racing, you’ve done a good job.

  • The body of your main character’s best friend is dumped on their doorstep. They make it their mission to find out who is responsible, even if it means crossing some lines and breaking some laws.
  • A murderer is on the loose in your character’s hometown. For 10 weeks they have killed one person on the same day at the same time. Your main character is the next victim. They are abducted exactly three days before the planned kill time.
  • Strange things start happening around town. Your main character decides to find out for themselves what is going on. They do learn the truth, but now they aren’t allowed to leave.
  • Your character suffers from a condition that causes seemingly random blackouts for varying amounts of time. The only thing they ever remember before these episodes is a yellow car with a dent on the side. One day, that car is parked outside their house. This time, there is no blackout.
  • Your main character and their friends take an unsolicited mini-vacation to an off-limits island off the coast of their seaside town. Shortly after arrival, they discover the islands inhabitants and the reason why it was off limits.
  • Your protagonist is in intensive therapy due to extremely vivid nightmares detailing someone’s gruesome death. Many have said it’s just their twisted imagination, but this new therapist seems to think it’s much more than that.
  • You are legally allowed to kill someone one time in your life. You must fill out a series of paperwork, and your intended victim will be given notice of your plan.
  • A brilliant serial killer has been getting away with murder for decades. His only weakness is his acute inability to tell a lie. He is finally caught and tried for all murders. Write about how he still manages to walk free, with no charges laid.
  • Your character is a host at a restaurant. A couple comes in and says they have a reservation. You look it up in the system and find that the reservation was booked 40 years ago.

Tips for Writing a Thriller

  • Have a story that suits a thriller. This usually involves the protagonist falling victim to someone else and being caught in impossible situations.
  • Different points of view can add a lot of value to a thriller. It gives several perspectives and allows the reader into the heads of many characters.
  • Put action as close to the beginning as possible.
  • Don’t be afraid to make your characters miserable.

Thriller Book Writing Template

Squibler has a book writing template that was created specifically for writing a thriller:

thriller novel template

It will walk you through each section of a typical thriller. It includes the basics of a thriller structure, without stifling your creativity. The guidelines are easy to understand, but loose enough that you can insert the details of your story with ease.

Horror Writing Prompts for Adults

The horror genre has always had a cult-like following. Several fictional killers have become household names. Some horror fans will spend their whole lives chasing the adrenaline that comes with a good scare.

If you’re learning how to become a better writer in order to scare your readers, these writing prompts will get you started. A book writing template may be helpful in creating a true horror as setting the stage properly is crucial.

  • It’s Halloween night and a group of rowdy teenagers break into an infamously haunted house in their town. They soon discover it is not the ghosts they have to fear, but the madman who lives upstairs is poisoning them with hallucinogenic gas.
  • There is a disease outbreak at a school. It appears at first to be chicken pox but it is actually a virus that is causing violent outbreaks in the children who begin to terrorize the town.
  • Your main character attends a meditation retreat. It turns out to be a recruiting process for an extremist cult that convinces members to commit dangerous acts of terror. Your protagonist is the only one in the room who is immune.
  • So overcome by his nightmares, your main character attacks anyone who comes near him. He cannot distinguish between loved ones and the monsters in his head.
  • A young man has to dive 300 feet into the ocean to rescue his girlfriend caught in a broken submarine. He must cross through a genetically modified shark breeding ground.
  • An old time capsule is about to be opened and the whole town is present for the celebration. When opened, the only thing found inside is a detached human hand with a threatening note in the grasp. The note is written in your character’s handwriting but dated 50 years before they were even born.

Master horror writer Stephen King reveals some of his thought process: “So where do the ideas—the salable ideas—come from? They come from my nightmares. Not the night-time variety, as a rule, but the ones that hide just beyond the doorway that separates the conscious from the unconscious.”

Horror doesn’t always have to be fantastical and dreamy in nature. Sometimes horror exists in the real world, within people.

Tips for Writing Horror

  • Don’t be afraid to give that gruesome, bloody description.
  • Aim to create extreme emotions.
  • Make sure the readers care about your characters. This will make their horrible situations more impactful.
  • Consider what scares you the most. Keep this in mind when writing.
  • Set the stakes high.
  • Some comic relief or brief periods of peace are okay – necessary even. It can help build suspense.

Crime and Mystery Writing Prompts for Adults

Stories of crime and mystery have been told for ages. There are some classic crime dramas that will never get old. Many non-fiction books have been written on this topic as well. 

Creating a proper mystery takes time and much planning. When done correctly though, it makes for a most memorable story.

  • Your main character discovers another women’s clothes tucked in the back of her boyfriends closet. She plans an elaborate fishing trip to get him far away for a weekend so she can teach him a lesson.
  • A new serial killer is on the loose, killing one person every other day within 500 feet of a museum. There must be a connection and a reason, but how will they catch him when he keeps destroying the cameras and escaping?
  • A young officer is three years sober and committed to getting back on track. That is until he is called to the scene of a high-profile drug bust and is in charge of collecting evidence. Can he control himself around so many drugs?
  • Abandoned cars start randomly appearing throughout the city. No license plates and nothing inside. That is until one is found to contain several dismembered human limbs.
  • Your character has been receiving nasty, lifelike drawings in the mail. They ignore them at first, thinking it is some kids being silly. Until the drawings start coming to life. Since they have the drawings, they know what is going to happen next, and in what order.
  • Your main character and her husband awake one night in the early hours of the morning, both recalling a horrific dream from the night before. They soon learn the dream to be true as they discover a fresh, painful brand in between each of their shoulder blades.
  • Your character never wakes up feeling rested, no matter how long they sleep for. Medication doesn’t help. They decide to film themselves one night. The next morning they watch as they get out of bed around midnight, smirk at the camera, and wave before disappearing out the door for hours.
  • Your protagonist is a member of a small religious group. When a precious artifact goes missing, the head elder’s daughter is blamed for it. Your character knows she couldn’t be responsible because the two of them were romantically involved at the time of the theft. Such activities are strictly forbidden and the daughter would rather go down for the theft than admit to breaking that law.
  • There is a serial killer going after the children of rich and notable families in the area. Your main character is the child of one such family and is terrified every waking moment. Tired of living in fear, they decide to figure out who the killer is and stop them  
  • Your character gets a DNA test, just for fun. After getting the results and doing some more research, they discover that members of their ancestry from all over the world were once all gathered in the same place. The reason is unknown.
  • Your character receives a strange voicemail from an unknown number. The voicemail ends up changing the course of their entire life.
  • Your character is in an accident and loses the memory of the last year of their life. There are so many things that don’t make sense. They must retrace their steps to find answers.
  • The entire town has started sleepwalking, together, every night.  
  • Your character has a short but friendly encounter with a stranger in an elevator. The next day, they are all over TV as the victim of a brutal murder.
  • Your character is redecorating and takes down a painting. They notice something strange engraved on the back of the frame.
  • Your character goes to their usual coffee shop and orders “the usual.” The Barista smiles, nods, and slides something entirely different across the counter. She has never made a mistake before.
  • Your character opens a random book at the library when the cover page falls out. It says “if you are reading this, you have been chosen.”
  • When looking through some old family photos – going back generations – your character notices a cat in almost every photo. The very same colorful spotted cat with a single docked ear that is sitting on their lap.
  • When paying for their groceries, your main character mentions to the clerk that there is a mess in aisle 11. The clerk is confused and explains that there is no aisle 11.

Tips for Writing Crime and Mystery

  • This is a genre where a book writing template can come in handy. The plots are often so complex, it can be overwhelming to keep it all straight.
  • Draw inspiration from real-life crimes. This will make your story believable.
  • Also, draw your inspiration from real-life people and give them realistic motives behind their crimes. Crime and mystery are rarely set in a fantasy world, so being realistic is important.
  • Know how the mystery is solved before you start writing.
  • Include a few cliffhangers – usually at the end of a chapter.

Science Fiction Writing Prompts for Adults

Science fiction is similar to fantasy in that you can make up a lot of stuff, which is a fun way to write.

This is a versatile genre that can be molded into anything you want.

Sometimes, it is rooted in truth with elements of real scientific and technological advances. Other times, there are many assumptions made about the future of science, and lots of make-believe takes place.

  • A spaceship that can surpass the speed of light is allowing a few humans on board to escape our solar system and it’s dying sun. How does the world decide who gets to survive?
  • A shy, introverted tech guy develops a virus that can control human desires, impulses, and choices.
  • A pet store becomes overrun with kittens and sells them off at a low price. However, these cats are actually an alien hybrid that can body jump. It begins causing the owners of these cats to commit suicide within 24 hours of adoption.
  • A live TV broadcast from the White House experiences some technical difficulties. They end up broadcasting a top-secret meeting about a pending alien invasion.
  • Science has developed a brain scanning software that can read thoughts. Before they can decide what to do with it, someone has hacked the system and stolen it.
  • Your character wakes up on a spaceship with no memory.
  • The world has developed a genetic system that engineers everyone for a specific job in the community. Your character hates what they were created to do. This never happens.
  • The world has finally reached a state of all-encompassing peace thanks to a technical system that keeps things regulated. Your character is in charge of keeping the system running. When they discover exactly how the system is kept running, they consider abandoning their post and never turning back.
  • Your character accidentally traps themselves in an alternate universe that hasn’t discovered electricity or technology yet.

Tips for Writing Science Fiction

  • Make your story complex, but don’t rush it. Let your audience process information before adding more.
  • Keep the language simple and easy to understand even if the world isn’t. The majority of your readers will not be scientists or tech experts.
  • Be consistent in terms of the universe. Physical laws, social classes, etc. Know your own world.

Dystopian Writing Prompts for Adults

Dystopian stories are growing in popularity. The genres itself is growing and evolving all the time as people figure out what works and what entertains.

Dystopian is a fun genre to read and experience, but writing it can be just as enjoyable. Having fun while learning how to become a better writer is of utmost importance.

Be careful you’re not writing Dystopia just because it sells well. Make sure you have a real story to tell and that it’s one you believe in.

  • A newly married couple become pregnant with twins. Due to growing overpopulation, they are told they must make a choice when the babies are born. Only one will live. Rather than submit to this, they plan their escape across the border.
  • An amateur teen scientist accidentally discovers an impending alien attack set to destroy earth within a month. He becomes the unwilling leader of the evacuation and defense coalition.
  • A hacker discovers that the new iPhone can be remotely detonated. Many corrupt political leaders are assassinated in this way on the same day. The world breaks into chaos.
  • World War III has come and gone. Governments are a thing of the past and money is useless. Survival is the objective. Your main character also has a medical condition to keep under control.
  • A horrible outbreak of disease devastated the wildlife population 100 years ago. A scientist has recently created a virus that will strengthen the immune systems of the remaining animals. It works too well, and the animals are starting to overtake the human population.
  • After mental illness devastates a generation, scientists create an airborne substance that balances the levels of all people on the earth. Your character is one of the few who is immune.
  • Rampant wildfires are taking over the surface of the earth. Your character is part of a group who is trying to find a rumored ocean deep settlement. The settlement doesn’t really exist.
  • Nature extremists have taken over the government. Any and all activities that are harmful to the land or plants are forbidden and outlawed.
  • Natural farming is a thing of the past. All food is manufactured artificially and distributed. There is no flavor and it’s the same thing every day. Your character takes a stress-relieving trip to the mountains. Here they find the remnants of some real plants, with a few berries on them.

Tips for Writing Dystopian Fiction

  • Know what the message of the story is. What is the main character trying to achieve?
  • A dystopian society is usually one that has taken the current problems of the world and projected them into the future.
  • Dystopian realities are never good ones – make sure you have enough doom, gloom, and darkness for your readers to understand the state of the world.

Historical Writing Prompts for Adults

Historical fiction can be whimsical and charming. It can be dark and spooky. It can be funny and ridiculous. Stories of history span many genres.

Historical fiction can be a combination of educational and entertaining. It tests a writer’s research skills as well as knowledge. The better depiction you can create of your desired time period, the more effective your story will be.

Learning to research is crucial to know how to become a better writer.

  • From a first-person perspective, write about the showdown between a criminal and a lion in the Roman Colesseum.
  • Abraham Lincoln is famous for his top hat. Where did the top hat come from? Who was the president without it? Write a story about the infamous top hat and its life.
  • The Berlin wall has crashed to the ground and its love at first sight for one lucky couple – whose parents aren’t so impressed.
  • Your character is a talented composer whose direct competition is Beethoven.
  • Write about a dinner party where three famous historical figures are in attendance.
  • Your best friend has invented the very first time-travel machine.
  • Write about a well-known war, but give it a different outcome.
  • Write a happy ending for Dracula.
  • Your character’s husband of ten years has just confessed that he has traveled through time from the fourteenth century. He decided to stay because he fell in love with her.
  • Write about the thoughts of someone who is secretly watching Michelangelo paint the Sistine Chapel.
  • Your character is the only one who knows who really killed JFK. It wasn’t Oswald.
  • Your character is working under William Shakespeare as his apprentice.
  • Write about a pair of detectives who solve their cases by traveling back and forth in time.
  • Write about the experience of someone who has just learned of the Titanic’s sinking. They had a loved one on board.
  • Choose a major historical event. Write from the perspective of a witness.
  • Your character wants to travel across the land. No forms of transportation have been invented yet.
  • Write about someone who worked at one of the first printing presses during the printing revolution of the 15th century.

Tips for Writing Historical Fiction

  • Do your research! Inaccuracies or incorrect facts about the time you are writing in will break trust with your readers and decrease your credibility.
  • Choose a specific time period and location. “Early twentieth century” is too broad.
  • In addition to setting and facts, characters need to match the time period. This includes dress, behavior, and language.
  • Small details will matter.
  • Balance the historical facts with the drama and fictional elements.

Humorous Creative Writing Prompts for Adults

Another genre that is especially fun to write as well as read, is a comedy. Nothing beats throwing your head back in full laughter.

The goal here is to make people laugh as much as possible while still balancing a good story and believable characters.

  • Substitute teachers are tired of not being taken seriously. They come together and form a secret society, with plans to revolt.
  • An Elvis impersonator is so good that many start to believe Elvis has actually come back to life. Soon, he has been recruited to lead a superstitious Elvis-loving cult.
  • Three friends are out on the town for a night. Write about the most ridiculous series of events you can think of.
  • Life has gotten tough and your character is considering moving back in with their parents. Before they are able to make a decision, their parents show up at their door asking if they can move in.
  • Your character wakes up one day and everything they say rhymes. They can’t control it.
  • The climate is changing and your main character’s city gets snow for the first time in their entire life. She and her friends are recruited for clean up.
  • Your main character has never had a real job before. They are starting a job at the biggest, busiest store in town on the busiest day of the year.
  • Your character is set up on a blind date with their sworn enemy.
  • Every morning you have a package delivered that contains an item you end up needing that day.
  • Struggling with writer’s block, an author decides to sit at a local train station for information. They get some good material.
  • Your characters are holding a high-stakes rock-paper-scissors tournament.
  • Your main character gets backstage at a concert. What happens back there is much more interesting than the show.
  • Your protagonist decides to buy an old school bus and travel across the country. Being single without any close friends, they post an ad asking if anyone wants to join. The end up having their pick of travel partners.
  • Write a story about a low-profile, insignificant but long-unsolved crime is finally cracked.
  • Your character is a serial killer who kills anyone who hitchhikes along the mountain they live on. One day, they pick up a hitchhiker who kills whoever picks him up.
  • The world’s greatest detective finally meets his match: A criminal so stupid and so careless that the detective can’t ever predict what he is going to do next.

Tips for Writing Comedy

  • Test the humor on others. You might find something hilarious, but if no one else is going to laugh, it will be useless to include.
  • Observe comedy. Your ability to write it will hinge on your experience with it. Watch, read, listen, and speak comedy.
  • Have fun with it. Comedy is fun. If you’re not laughing at yourself along the way, you’ll never get through to the end.

Fantasy Writing Prompts for Adults

Fantasy is one of the most popular genres of the time. It’s growing every day because of its creative and immersive nature. People love to preoccupy themselves with something magical.

Being transported into another world for a little while – that’s what fantasy can do

  • In a world of advanced technological and magical advancements, one group keeps their practice of ancient spells a secret. One day, they are discovered and it leads to a fight. What is more powerful – old magic, or new technology?
  • A large, protected national forest is secretly home to werewolves. One summer there is an especially bad flea epidemic, and the werewolves are greatly affected. The fleas from the werewolves infect the town water supply and start turning everyone into werewolves. The only ones not affected are children under 13.
  • The world is overrun with vampires and humans are dying out. Different races and factions of vampires are beginning to go to war over the limited supply of human blood.
  • Your character finds a strange looking egg in the forest. Thinking it will make a great decoration, they take it home. What hatches from that egg surpasses their wildest imagination.
  • A city has spent centuries living in peace with the water-dwellers who reside in their lakes. Suddenly, the water dwellers declare war and no one knows why.
  • Your character has always been able to alter their appearance. They hide unattractive features. Suddenly, their powers stop working and their true appearance is revealed.
  • Your main character has a fascination with untouched societies – such as hidden tribes in the Amazon. She sets out to study them as a living. One day she accidentally allows herself to be seen by one of the members. What this person does is beyond what your character ever thought to be real.
  • The earth itself is dying and all life on the planet is dying with it.
  • Some people in the world have magic, others don’t. No one knows why. Your main character has magic, but his best friend doesn’t. The friend is exceptionally jealous and is growing more and more desperate to make the magic his.

Tips for Writing Fantasy

  • Focus on being unique
  • Don’t neglect worldbuilding . Inconsistencies will be obvious to readers. This is where a book writing software like Squibler can come in handy. It helps you stay organized and efficient.
  • Create unique names.
  • Don’t be afraid to make the journey long and the outcome unexpected.

Fantasy Novel Writing Template

Fantasy is one of the most complicated genres due to the necessity of building a brand new world. Squibler’s fantasy writing template will help you through this daunting process:

fantasy novel writing template

This template offers guidelines and suggestions for building your world as well as structuring and creating your storyline. It’s helpful but loose enough to allow your creativity to keep flowing.

Dialogue Inspired Writing Prompts

Sometimes, all it takes is a small exchange or a witty one-liner to get your brain working. Take these words and start something new. Or, insert them into an existing project and see what happens.

  • “As she stepped onto the train, I fought every urge to jump on after her.”
  • “He was expensive. Please be more considerate of my money the next time I hire an assassin to kill you.”
  • “You say that like it was a struggle.”
  • “I’m your conscience. That is literally my one job.”
  • “Well, I wish you didn’t love me. I guess no one is getting what they want today.”
  • “I guess it didn’t take.”
  • “I was bored so I blew up my house.”
  • “I taught you how to pick locks, and THAT is how you’re choosing to use the skill?”
  • “They thought I would forget everything. I remember even more than when they started.”
  • “Yes. But I don’t care.”
  • “I killed my mother. Are you really questioning what I can do to you right now?”

Write Your Next Masterpiece With These Creative Writing Prompts for Adults

Whether you have a book writing templat e all filled out or you are starting from scratch, these writing prompts will get your imagination going and make your writing time more productive.

Beat the writer’s block, get your groove back, or just be inspired.  Figure out how to love writing again. Whatever you’re looking for, hopefully, these ideas have helped form the story you need to tell.

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Writing Forward

25 Creative Writing Prompts

by Melissa Donovan | Oct 23, 2018 | Creative Writing Prompts | 236 comments

creative writing prompts

Twenty-five creative writing prompts to inspire and motivate you.

Don’t you just hate writer’s block? Some say it’s a disease that only creative workers succumb to. Some say it’s a curse. Others argue that it doesn’t exist at all. But just about everyone has been there–sitting in front of a blank screen, fingers itching to create a masterpiece. And nothing happens.

For me, the most bizarre thing about writer’s block is that it strikes randomly. Most of the time, I’m overwhelmed with more ideas than I can possibly write about. But then I’ll sit down to write and my mind goes blank. Sure, I flip through my notebooks and review all the ideas I’ve stockpiled, but nothing feels right. I want something fresh. I need a new angle.

To help break through this block, I started turning to creative writing prompts. And then I started making up my own prompts. The result:  1200 Creative Writing Prompts ,  a book designed to spark ideas for writers.

Creative Writing Prompts

Today I’d like to share a mash-up of creative writing prompts, all of which come from  1200 Creative Writing Prompts . There are no rules. Write a poem. Write a short story. Write an essay. Aim for a hundred words or aim for a hundred thousand. Just start writing, and have fun.

  • The protagonist is digging in the garden and finds a fist-sized nugget of gold. There’s more where that came from in this hilarious story of sudden wealth.
  • Write a poem about something ugly—war, fear, hate, or cruelty—but try to find the beauty (silver lining) in it or something good that comes out of it.
  • An asteroid and a meteoroid collide near Earth, and fragments rain down onto the planet’s surface, wreaking havoc. Some of those fragments contain surprising elements: fossils that prove life exists elsewhere in the galaxy, for example.
  • The story starts when a kid comes out of the school bathroom with toilet paper dangling from his or her waistband. Does someone step forward and whisper a polite word, or do the other kids make fun? What happens in this pivotal moment will drive the story and have a deep impact on the main character.
  • Revisit your earliest memories of learning about faith, religion, or spirituality.
  • Use all of the following words in a poem: bit, draw, flex, perilous, bubble, corner, rancid, pound, high, open.
  • Write a poem about a first romantic (dare I say sexual?) experience or encounter.
  • Write a personal essay describing an exotic animal you’d like to have as a pet.
  • Silvery flakes drifted downward, glittering in the bright light of the harvest moon. The blackbird soared.
  • Write a tongue-in-cheek, satirical tribute. Tell bad drivers, rude customers, and evil dictators how grateful you are for what they’ve done. Do it with a wink and a smile.
  • Write a story about a detective solving a crime that was committed against his or her partner or a crime that his or her partner committed.
  • Three children are sitting on a log near a stream. One of them looks up at the sky and says…
  • There is a magic talisman that allows its keeper to read minds. It falls into the hands of a young politician.
  • We’ve seen cute and cuddly dragons, mean and vicious dragons, and noble dragons. Write a story about a different kind of dragon.
  • Use all of the following words in a poem: dash, hard, staple, billboard, part, circle, flattened.
  • Write a story set in the distant future when humanity is at a fork in the evolutionary road. Some humans are evolving; others are not.
  • The kids were raised on the mantra “Family is everything.” What happens when they find out their parents aren’t who they pretended to be? Will the family fall apart?
  • Write a poem about one (or both) of your parents. It could be a tribute poem, but it doesn’t have to be.
  • Turn ordinary animals into monsters that prey on humans: dog-sized rats, killer rabbits, or a pack of rabid mountain lions. Give the animals intelligence and set them loose.
  • A twinkling eye can mean many things. Write a poem about a twinkle in someone’s eye.
  • What determines an action or person as good or evil? Who gets to decide what or who is good or evil? Write a personal essay about it.
  • Write a poem about your body.
  • The protagonist is about to drift off to sleep only to be roused by the spontaneous memory of an embarrassing moment from his or her past.
  • Write about the happiest day of your life.
  • Use all of the following words in a poem: feast, fire, modify, squash, robbed, forgotten, understated.

Now It’s Your Turn

Did any of these prompts inspire you? Do you ever use creative writing prompts to ignite a writing session? Tell us what gets your pen moving by leaving a comment, and keep writing!

To get more prompts like these, pick up a copy of  1200 Creative Writing Prompts   today.

Creative Writing Prompts

236 Comments

Lance

Melissa, Wow, there’s something about this list that feels like a lightbulb went off! There are times when I feel stuck, like ideas aren’t there. And this list really shines what can be…limitless possibilities!

26. If my life were a cartoon… 27. Pick two crayons at random. What thoughts/feelings do two color stir up in you?

Melissa Donovan

Ah, I love the feeling of a light bulb illuminating my mind! Thanks for adding to the list!

Tiara

what about… That spark which seemed like a star, when it approached closer, my lips went white and body shivering despite the fact I knew I was placed in a desert – by them- and the sun shone directly above my head. Then at a distance of 1m probably, I got the sight of…

Steve Davis

Thanks for sharing these.

If you have children, visualize one of them running the house for a day.

That’s a good one. Kids running the house…how very Dr. Seuss! Cat in the Hat without the cat, hehee.

Positively Present

Ooh, great prompts! Thanks for sharing these!

Thanks! Glad you like them!

Fouzia

A day in the life of a doormat

The adventures of a shooting star

Making friends with my enemy

Ooh, interesting! Thanks, Fouzia.

Kevin Van Buerle

Hi Melissa,

Bought 3 of your books. 1. 101 Creative Writing Excercises 2.10 Core Practices For Better Writing and 3. 1,200 Creative Writing Prompts.

I decided to start with 1,200 Creative Writing Prompts.

So far, I have written 4 stories from the prompts. I guess I want to enquire as to whether I need to go through each prompt. Thank you

Wow, Kevin, thanks for getting three of my books. I truly appreciate that. You can use the prompts in any way that is comfortable for you. No, you do not have to go through each and every prompt. I encourage you to skip around, flip through book, and find prompts that inspire. I hope you have fun with it! Thanks again.

Jenny

When I took my creative writing class in college the instructor gave us a really good one to use if we couldn’t think of what to write. She said to write the word Remember 3 times and that would prompt something. The entire class tried it and it worked and I have used it several times since then!

I like the use of remember . There are a lot of words that help people when they can’t think of anything to write about. Maybe I should do a list of single-word prompts. Hmm…

Camille

Wow. I was COMPLETELY stuck and this brought back a great story for me to write about, though only faintly attached to any memory of mine. Thanks!

That’s great, Camille! Good luck with your story!

Meredith

I like to use the question “what would happen if …. ”

What would happen if your husband retired and your kid left home and you’re getting older? -> ” Always Faithful”

What would happen if a person moved back home to care for a relative after decades of living far away? -> “The Way Home”

What would happen if a person who has been divorced and alone for a long time suddenly met the most perfect mate imaginable … but it turns out the person may not be what she appears to be? -> “Baiting and Fishing”

In a way, I think “What Would Happen If…” is my novelist version of my favorite childhood game, “Let’s pretend that…..”

“What if” is the best creative writing prompt ever! You can apply it to just about any situation. Just look at any movie, book, or even real life and start asking, “What if things happened a little differently?” or “What if this person made a different decision?” Asking these questions can take your writing in all kinds of new and interesting directions! It’s great fun.

Marelisa

I love these. Here’s one:

“She was drifting off to sleep when there was a sharp knock at the door . . . “

Ooh, I like that one.

Melanie

Fabulous list. I’ve been brainstorming all morning with no luck, and so I came online and VOILA, here you are. Loved the list, especially 22.

I’ve created several interesting works using my personal favourite “things to do on a rainy day”. I usually write from the perspective of a child, but rarely myself as a child. This one just opens up so many possibilities for make beleive!

Thanks, Melanie! Glad this list helped you in a time of need. My favorite “things to do on a rainy day” story is The Cat in the Hat . Of course, it’s a “day when mom’s away” rather than a “rainy day,” but it’s pretty much the same idea. Keep writing!

Josh

these are very great… i got this one off of True Jackson VP.. spin around and the first thing you see will give you an idea..

i just did this and i saw flowers…

i’m writing about “you are walking through a field with your best friend.. you spot a flower and pick it up.. it gives you super powers…

Ah, a flower that gives one super powers. I love that idea! You should definitely run with it!

McKie

I love True Jackson VP! Cool that you got an idea from it! 🙂

Grace

You’re suggestion really helped! Im doing imaginative writing for homework and I was so stuck but I’ve found the right one now!!

That’s awesome, Grace! Keep writing.

catherine

ooh those are cool… how about: He cradled her, taking in all of her burdens as he swept her hair back from her face and stroked her cheek in a gentle calming motion.

I do creative writing as an A level so it would be cool to know if this starter is ok! ty xoxo

Catherine, I think that’s a great starter line, especially for a romantic story or poem! My only suggestion would be the part “gentle calming motion.” There might be one too many adjectives there. If you keep both adjectives, be sure to add a comma after the first one: “gentle, calming motion.” Nice job!

Wendi

A young man attempts to pull a robbery of some kind on an older man. Things go drastically wrong for the young man. Either viewpoint!

Either viewpoint, or both, could work!

Maria

what if the old man was a retired super spy and the young robber is homeless and broke. he tells this to the old man and the man trains him to be a good spy and lets the young robber live with him. then the old man gets the young robber a job as a spy and then they both find out that the retired spy is the young robbers father and the mother ran away while she was pregnant to go be with some rich guy but the rich guy killed the mother and the young robber has been living on the streets since he was 10.

Buttercup Smith

Heres a gorgeous one! Write a story in the POV of a flower being given from person 2 person.

Interesting!

Katie

Wow! These are great, thanks for putting these up. I’m 12 and I really want to be a novelist when I grow up. One of my favourites is: the empty glass. It’s a bit over-used but I think that it’s so versatile, it doesn’t matter if it’s popular because you can take it in so many different directions!

That’s great, Katie! You’re off to an early start. Just stay focused and passionate, and you’ll become a novelist if that’s what you truly want. Good luck to you!

AJ

Katie, It is never too young to start living your dreams. Don’t ever let anyone get you down. Keep on writing and believe in yourself that one day you will make it! Best of luck!

I couldn’t agree more, AJ!

I’m 11 and everyone thinks I am a good writer and I love to write so much!

That’s wonderful, Maria. Keep writing!

Kristi

I’m 16 and i wrote a great alternate ending for an assignment in english, and i wrote a short christmas story on christmas eve, but now i just don’t know what to write about. i have ideas and i have been reading prompts that are good but i just don’t know.

Kristi, give the prompts a try. There are also lots of writing exercises that you can use to spark writing sessions when you’re feeling uninspired. The trick is to write something (anything) rather than sit around waiting for something to write about.

Annie

Hi! I am 14 and just wanted to do some creative writing, but could not think of anything to write about. Thank you so much for the ideas! I will definitely be using some.

You’re so welcome! Good luck with your writing!

dI

I’m 14 and writing is my whole life. I recently started a blog with my friend, but she’s not a writer. She just inspires me with ideas and stuff. I love your site, Melissa. I check it almost every day. Your prompts and tips are so completely helpful! Thanks so much!

Thank you! I appreciate your kind words.

Emily Mead

I’m fourteen, too, and writing is hard to juggle with school and everything else that’s going on. I know – such a teenager-y thing to say…but true nonetheless. I just wanted to say thank you for posting these prompts because they make for quick, satisfying writing that doesn’t end in frustration (at least, mostly). Thanks again!

Writing is hard to juggle at any age. It takes a lot of perseverance, but if you stick with it, you’ll succeed. Good luck to you, and keep on writing!

RayeAnne

Im also fourteen and i love to write! i have won a national competition 2 years in a row and i never dreamed i would have won or anything but that just goes to show that youre never too young to write! Just keep believing in yourself and who knows where you might go!

I am thrilled when young people are so passionate about writing (or any craft, really). Congratulations on your success!

Ann Zimmerman

One good place to find good story prompts are the obituaries of a large newspaper. One true example: from the Arizona Republic years ago, an elderly gentleman got hit by a motorist one a late, rainy afternoon as he was crossing the street. He had been an immigrant from Norway, and had been a professor at ASU, and was retired and in his 80’s when he died. I have always imagined what his life had been, what he had experienced, etc.

Yes, newspapers are packed with story ideas!

Andrea

Write a story from the perspective of a sock being separated from its twin in the laundry.

That would make a great children’s story.

salman hanif

a person went to the football stadium and was wearing manu shirt and came out with a barcalona shirt.why???

Well, I have no idea, but this certainly makes a good writing prompt!

Lovarsnari

I love these!! 😀 Here are a few I made: *Make up your own recipes for your favorite foods *Create your own list of idioms *Write stories of idioms literally happening *Write about something blue *What’s your idea of a perfect vacation? *List what you fear. pick a few and write how they came, why, and when you got the fear first *What would you say to an univited guest at your party *Draw a picture of the setting around you. Now look into your inner being. What do you truly feel? *Write from the point of view of a stack of paper waiting a few inches from the shredder *Her laugh broke the silence…

These are great! Thank you for adding them to the list.

By the way, I’m 11, love writing, and hope to publish fiction teen/children books one day

I wish you the best of luck! You have a head start, being such a young writer. Stick with it!

LovemeHateme

Lovarsnari,that’s kinda funny because l think the same thing! 🙂 My prob is that l start writing with great ideas,get stuck, and then start a new story/play….

Anonymous

same except that I’m 13 and mix my writing with my guitar playing and music

Me

Well when i get stuck I like to think: What would I do if I were to die in a week? Once I picked everything and it turned quite an interesting story…

That’s a good one!

Violet

Hey I’m 14 years old and I love writing but I get writers block often and this really helped me. I love reading the ideas and other people’s ideas they are just very interesting. Number 19 seemed the most interesting to me and I’m almost done with my story. 🙂 thanks so much

Thanks, Violet. I often find that prompts and exercises can be used in different ways. You don’t always have to do the actual exercise. Sometimes, just reading through a book of exercises will generate ideas for a project I’m working on or help me understand a writing concept in a new way. Good luck with your story!

Bee

Hi Melissa 🙂 Last year i won junior writer of the year ( I’m 13) and I am entering this year as well and in the process of creating my first draft. I love your site and its wonderful, all-inclusive feel. So, here are my ideas for your list.

26. Post-War oppression & depression ( this was my winning topic last year – i wrote it from the perspective of a scarred war veterans’ emotionally abused child) I also commend you in your point concerning finding hope and light in darkness ( war, death, etc.) and i am going to write about that! Possibly with an Amish girl as the protagonist? thank you again for inspiring me. I also hope to be a great writer some day. Bee

Congratulations, Bee, and thanks for adding to these prompts. I wish you the best of luck in becoming a great writer. You are certainly well on your way!

crayonbillsbhb

POV of a toy sitting on a shelf in a toy store, hoping to be purchased.

your pet starts talking to you in perfect english and tells you what he/she really thinks of you…. what does he/she say?

Ha! That could be enlightening indeed!

I actually saw an animated short based on that premise (or something similar to it) and found it quite compelling. A great idea!

Nick Danger

My contribution:

“When I look in the mirror, I don’t see what everyone else sees. What I see is…”

Nice! Thanks for adding this prompt, Nick.

Jessy

My college English teacher gave my class this prompt. First Line: John closed his eyes. Last Line: It was a good day for the yellow crocuses. Anything in between. I easily made five pages with that prompt. Have fun guys.

Thanks for sharing that prompt, Jessy. It’s a good one.

Jalen Kinmon

Im a 17 year old living in the most secluded area of Kentucky, unfortunately. lol My dream is to pursue a career in filmmaking, my goal is to help people who are confused or unsure about life and what they want to do with their oppourtunity of life. I want people to think and find happiness in their lives by doing something they love. My idea of doing this came from being in a depressed state from the past few years as a teen and felt strong enough to overcome it without professional help which is progressing for the good. I found setting goals is a great strategy to stay focused and optimistic about life. I appreciate your time for reading this and if there is any advice you could influence me with id appreciate that as well. Thanks

It’s wonderful that you have set your sights on a clear career path at such a young age. Filmmaking is awesome! I sometimes wish I had taken up an interest in film or photography. The best advice I can offer is to never give up, stay focused, and pursue your goals with heart and soul. I would also advise studying film at college, if you can. The film industry is notoriously networked and you’ll benefit greatly by making friends and acquaintances who share your interest. Best of luck to you!

Thanks for taking the time to reply, it’s very much appreciated and yes im going to film school out in LA next year.

Hi! I am 13 and have been writing since I was 7 or younger, and I am in love with writing. I am a very dedicated author and I have finished books in the past (about 11 or 12) but now I can’t seem to get into any longer stories! I write more short stories now, but it’s not satisfying anymore…and then, when I come up with a new idea, it’s useless, and my brain gets all cluttered! Help!

It sounds like you’re having trouble staying focused. The first (and most important) thing that can help with that is to stay healthy: eat right, exercise, and get enough sleep. You may also need to break up your writing with other activities. Make sure you read regularly! For the time being, maybe you need to write short stories. I’m not sure you need to fight it.

thank you for the advice! 🙂

You are most welcome!

Emily

Hello 🙂 I am 17 and doing my HSC this year. I am attempting (unsuccessfully) to write a creative writing piece as practice for my exams, and thank you so much for these, they’re really helpful 🙂 I am not a writer (and never will be), but these have given me some great ideas that I can hopefully use to increase my writing skills for my exams. So thank you very much 🙂

You are very welcome, Emily, and best of luck on your exams.

Nicole

I’ve found that this list, and peoples comments/ideas have been quite inspiring. I’m 21 and haven’t been in school for a few years and I have that desire to write, but never knew how to get started. I thank you all for these wonderful ideas and I’m hoping that writing will be a good outlet for me and my struggle with depression.

So really I’m just thanking you all 🙂

You’re welcome, Nicole, and thank you for joining in the discussion. Writing is a great way to work through emotions; I wish you the best of luck!

Summer

These are great!!!! My favourite starter would definetly have to be: “Sometimes a girl just has to run. Sometimes our feet take over. This was one of those times”

I think it holds a lot of suspense but it could also be happy and bright, like a sports day or carnival. Thanks for adding these, I am going to try to write a story for each one.

I’m not sure where that starter comes from, but it sounds good to me.

Yarrow Stronski

Hi! Thanks so much for these prompts. I especially like number two, because I feel like a little bit of positive thinking can go a long way. 🙂

I have a question, too, if you don’t mind.

What is your opinion on fanfictions? I know some creative writers don’t like them and feel they corrupt a series, while others think it’s a great creative exercise.

Thanks so much!

I think fan fiction is a great way for young and new writers to explore the craft. Some copyright holders are extremely strict about allowing fan fiction to be published. Others will actually develop and publish collections of fan fiction. There are also franchises in which fan fiction is encouraged. One of my all-time favorite writers, TV and film writer Damon Lindelof, said in a recent interview that he started out writing fan fiction. Now he’s writing for Ridley Scott and working on the Star Trek films as a fan-fic professional! It’s definitely an avenue worth pursuing if it interests you.

Art

I’m fifteen and I want to write a book before the end of highschool. The problem is I can’t finish what I’ve started. I always find a “better” idea and write about that and the cycle begins again. Please help me!!!

The only way to finish what you’ve started is to simply finish it. When “better” ideas present themselves, make a note and file those ideas away for a future project. Part of being a writer involves developing self-discipline. I recommend setting up a reward system. For example, you have to work on the novel for 20 minutes before you can call or text your friends after school. Or you have to finish a scene before you go out to see a movie. These are self-imposed rewards, so you have to discipline yourself. Nobody else can do it for you.

You might also look into participating in NaNoWriMo. The timing is great because it starts in just a few weeks. That means you’ll have some time to prepare and check it out. Then you can write your novel in November, leaving plenty of time afterwards for you to clean it up (edit, proof, polish).

Finally, if you’re truly committed to writing, start looking at schools with good creative writing programs and plan to study at college. University instructors are quite helpful in teaching students self-discipline and good writing habits and practices.

Best of luck to you, Art!

Alyssa

Hi! Your prompts and the comments have really helped me! I can’t wait to start some stories from them:) Here are a couple that I’ve come up with: The Bell sounded. Workers froze in their places… Kay frowned as she opened her school locker after school. Down the hall, Alexis and Christine exchanged grins…

That’s great, Alyssa. Keep up the good work!

Ashlee

These are fantastic! I’m also 21 and have been out of school for awhile. I used to write all the time when I was in school but not so much these days. These ideas are really going to help once I get started writing again. I’m attempting to set a goal for myself. An hour a day, just writing whatever I want. Just to get me back in the habit.

Thank you so much!!!

One prompt my creative writing teacher in high school gave the class was “It was a smile that darkness could kill…”

That’s wonderful! An hour a day is enough to produce quite a bit of writing. I wish you the best of luck, Ashlee!

Melanie Jones

Obviously it is now 2011 haha, but these are great!! I have wanted to write a novel for quite some time but I can’t seem to get the creative juices flowing. So I set out on a quest across the World Wide Web and I am finding some amazing ideas!! Thank you so much for this website I look forward to writing now instead of despairing of that dreaded cursor blinking me to oblivion!!

I hope your quest for inspiration is fruitful! And keep writing!

Emily

I’ve just been inspired to start a personal blog full of my own creative writing, with the assistance of some of these wonderful writing prompts (both yours, and the ones left in the comment section). Thank you, thank you, thank you.

That’s wonderful! Blogs have been a boon for writers, and I think more writers should take advantage of the technology. I wish you the best of luck with your blog, Emily.

Christi

Hi, I’m 17. I started creative writing when I was about 10 or 11. I found myself writing more and more when I was troubled a few years back, so it was good stress relief for me. But now that I’m busy with college, I realize that I haven’t been writing as much as I used to. I reread some of my old work and I thought “Hey, why not? I’ll give it a try for old times’ sake.”

I was a bit confused with where to start off, but these prompts really got my creative juices flowing. After I post this comment, I think I’ll try one or two of them and see how far it takes me. Thanks for the inspiration. 🙂

I’m so glad that these prompts inspired you, Christi. I think many writers go through phases when they drift away from the craft, but when you’re called back to it, that might be a sign. Follow it and keep writing!

Alli

In my junior year of high school, we were given a creative writing assignment to expand on this sentence:

“A person walked into the room, looked around, sat down, and ate.”

That’s a great prompt. It would certainly be interesting to see what a whole classroom of people come up with. I imagine each piece of writing would be quite different from the others, even though they are all based on the same premise. Thanks for sharing it, Alli.

Desmond

Here’s a prompt! Prop open the door. I can actually see my breathe tonight. But that doesnt mean im breathing.

Ooh, sounds like a zombie, robot, or vampire story.

Samantha

These writing ideas helped a lot thank you. I really want to go to a creative writing school when I get older. One idea which I just came up with is Write from the perspective of your fish.( does each fish have there own personality, how does each fish react to the different members of the house, what is it like to be a fish) 😛 I hope you like I write often mostly stories with a more poetic base, but once in a while i will feel in the mood to write some thing different. Oh also try continuing after this sentence. Its eyes gleamed pitch black death, creeping into imaginary, azure skies. now continue it :3

Thanks for sharing your prompt, Samantha, and good luck to you!

Hannah

For school, I have to enter a creative writing competition. I have two days and i was really panicking but then i found this website! It really helped! Thankyou Writing Forward!!

Hannah, I’m so glad you found help and inspiration here. Thank you!

KJS

Lately I’ve been trying to write a lot like Sarah Dessen! Were doing stories in class and I’m doin one about a girl who runs away, it starts out “I’m on the run! I don’t know where I’m going or where I’ll end up, but I’m not turning back!” 🙂 Do you like it?

I do like your opening line. It certainly grabs the reader’s attention and rouses curiosity. Nice job.

Maria

Thank you so much!!!! This got me over my terrible case of writer’s block. But now my muse is back!

Wow, thanks, Maria. That’s awesome!

Julz

I just want to say that this list of prompts has inspired me to take on a challenge of using one every day up until xmas on my blog… or at least until the end of the month!

Thanks for the great list 🙂

That’s awesome, Julz. Good luck with your December writing!

katie

I haven’t tried it yet, but I think a fun way to mix these up even more would be to choose one of these, then draw the name of an author out of a hat, then write that prompt in the style of that author. That would really stretch your creativity.

That’s an excellent exercise and would definitely be challenging. You’d have to be deeply familiar with the author’s voice.

Cass

I have found these prompts really helpful for the English lessons that I teach.

Many thanks.

That’s great, Cass. I love the idea of these prompts helping students with reading and writing.

sumaira jehanzeb

i have learnt English as a second language…writing is my passion…this page is REALLY inspiring!thanks for evoking our creative faculties… i want to suggest some topics and the list goes as: 1The beast in me 2Daily journal of a pair of shoes which is in the process of its making 3What the world be if gender roles get changed 4What if i were in the shoes of my English teacher 5How things at the high school are going to be if the concept of beauty gets altered altogether 6It is said that writing is all about pouring your mind on a piece of paper but what it your pen literally starts articulating your thoughts and you end up writing EVERRRRYTHING(What consequences are you going to face)

Thanks for adding your ideas to these prompts!

Rochelle

I haven’t tried the prompts yet but I have always wanted to be a writer since I was eight years old. However ever since graduating and entering the real world I find my muse being choked to death by the responsibility at home. I’ve had to give up my dream of writing for the past two years. I tried taking it up again and was drawing a huge blank, but just by reading a few of these prompts I’ve felt my muse start to breathe. Thank you!

Hi Rochelle. I remember graduating and entering the real world, and I had a similar experience. All of a sudden I just didn’t have the time or inspiration. It took a while, but I adjusted and my creativity returned. I’m so glad you found these prompts helpful!

Yazzy

I found like 5 great writing prompts thank u so much

You are so welcome!

ashlyn

you thought dragoons unicorns and monsters didnt exist? think again! write story of your pet unicorn

That’s a cute idea!

particia

Thank you for these, I am a writer waiting to hear if a publisher is going to publish my novel. Waiting is so hard and my mind has gone blank. These help to stir the jucies again. I’m hand writing them in a note book and taking them with me when I’m out, to write on the go. When I have to wait for a kid to get to the car I can write and not have to figure out how to start a story. So thank you. so much.

That’s awesome. What is it about being in a car or shower that makes us more creative? I always get ideas in those two locations!

Anna

thanks sooo much! those were super helfull! you have the most helpfull website ive found! and i’m a picky writer! THANKYOU!!!

Thanks, Anna.

Ebony

here are some more ideas: you inherit 1 million dollars your backpack grows wings on the way to school a zombie invasion stikes your small/big town a kidnapper captures you … hope these help 🙂

Thanks, Ebony!

Molly Sue

Hey! These prompts really helped and I can’t wait to use some 🙂 I have started with the one about twinklling eyes and turned it into a story about creatures similar to werewolves XD

Sounds interesting, Molly! Good luck with your story, and keep writing!

Maluly

My English teacher says she doesn’t believe in writer’s block. I on the other hand am not so sure. Sometimes I sit in the afternoon and stare out the window, unable to come up with anything good but I find that ideas flow like crazy at two in the morning with a cup of coffee in my left hand. That’s always my best remedy, though writing prompts like these always help me get going. Thanks for sharing 🙂

Some prompts:

10 things I hate about… What’s the recipe for those wonderful _______ muffins you baked last night? (Try filling that blank with ‘unicorn’.)

I believe in writer’s block, but I think that it’s presented as being unable to write whereas usually it’s just a case of needing to work a little harder at writing. Sometimes, we need to stop procrastinating, stop trying to force our ideas, or we just need to allow ourselves to write badly for a while. I believe there are ideas everywhere; the trick is to keep ourselves open to them and be willing to explore them. Having said all that, writer’s block still sucks. I’m like you, Maluly, the ideas flow like crazy at two in the morning (no coffee required!).

B.

i dont believe in writiers block.. i think its more like an exuse to hide what we really want to write or say. Like sometimes peoploe wonder if it will be good enough so they put it off or they dont want people who read it to know something.. its all about the way you look at it i guess. Write what you feel. Write whatever you want. I love writing but i find myself wondering will this be good enough? What would someone think if they read it? Maybe thats just me. no self esteem… but, low selfesteem is what keeps creativity hidden…. my advice.. to everyone is to just go for it. if its not good try again you’ll get better(:

I agree: just go for it.

CJM

Thanks for these! I definitely believe in writer’s block!! In fact, I am just emerging from what I like to call writer’s ‘droubt’, since it lasted at least a year. But I don’t think you need to be blocked to use prompts. They are great exercises and get you to try new ways of writing. And sometimes, when I get burned out with the story I’m currently writing, it helps to focus on something completely different for a while, and you can come back to it with fresh eyes. Here are some prompts that I came up with and they helped me out: 1) ‘It all started with the cat…’ 2) ‘Have you ever seen something out of the corner of your eye, but when you turned to look, found nothing there? You dismiss it as an illusion, a trick of the light. You’re wrong…’ 3) Write something from the perspective of a ghost. 4) Write something using the five senses EXCEPT sight (hearing, smell, touch, taste) 5) Instead of using first or third person, write with second person point-of-view (in other words, use ‘you’ instead of ‘he/she’ or ‘I’. Or try writing in present or even future tense, instead of past tense.

Oh yeah, and one more: 6) Write something from the perspective of the BAD guy, instead of the hero

I love when stories do this! Thanks for adding it, CJM.

These are excellent prompts, especially well suited for speculative fiction writers. My favorite is the prompt about seeing something out of the corner of your eye (that happens to me sometimes!). Thanks for adding these.

Lily Duval

Here’s one for those of you who have pets What do your pets do when you and other inhabitants of your house are not at home?

Ooh, that’s a good one, Lily. That could be great for a children’s story!

Arieda

Thank you SO much for these exciting writing prompts! They really inspire me. I have one idea for a prompt: Write about a conversation that you would have if were stuck in an elevator with a celebrity or famous book character.

You’re welcome, Arieda. I love your elevator prompt! You could also do it with characters from your novel as a test to see how each would behave in an elevator with a celebrity. That could tell you a lot about your characters. Good one!

Hannah

Lovely ideas, both of these! Arieda, that prompt gave me a short story idea, one that I’m pretty excited about, and I’m definitely going to have to do that with all my characters now, Melissa. 🙂 I thought up another twist on this prompt that intrigues me: Your characters get stuck in an elevator with you, their author. How do they react when they discover who you are and that you control their destinies? What sort of conversations would you have? Would you like interacting with your character? Would your character like you?

Hannah, I love your prompt idea. What a fun writing exercise: The Character Meets the Author. That’s quite brilliant!

alexis

Thank you so much for these, I’m trying to write a book…and I’ve been at a stand still lately, so this will help me more than ever.

You’re welcome, Alexis. I’m glad you found these prompts helpful.

Julia

Hi Ms. Donovan! thank you so much for the writing prompts! i’ve been using them for all my english creative writing assignments. it’s been my dream to be a writer since i was little. although i find it hard to write mysteries. ironically it’s my favorite genre to read though. any advice on how to get started on a good mystery?

I myself haven’t written mysteries, although I have read a few. My suggestion would be to read as many mysteries as you can, and watch mystery films and television shows, so you thoroughly know your genre (you should still read other stuff too!). Study the greats and ideas will come to you!

Patty

Wow i have writers block i have my charecter but i dont know what the problem is…… help any good title ideas?

When I’m stuck and can’t come up with a character or a title, I just skip it. The important thing is to keep writing. You can always come back later and add names and titles. Here’s how I do it:

GIRL said that there was no way out but OLD LADY knew otherwise…

I use all caps for characters who don’t have names yet. Many writers use a “working title” as they are developing their project. A working title can be anything. It’s just temporary.

You’ll find that as you work on your project (and if you work around these little setbacks), ideas will come to you. Good luck!

Jeff

Awesome post:) Thanks so much, really helped! have a great day! Peace-Jeff

Thanks, Jeff!

Melody

A prompt could be : She started to fall over and _________( fill in the blank) picked her up.

or : The alien gaze stared from above the fence , and I blushed in embarrassment.

100 words about your favorite animal

a short story about a difficult topic like : war , famine , bullying .etc

a poem about the weather

Hi Melody! Thanks for adding your prompts to this ever-growing list!

Shannon

Your prompts are definitely creative and helpful, but what I’m most impressed with is how you respond so positively and encouragingly to everyone who replied to this. Sometimes all it takes is a little bit of encouragement or approval from even a complete stranger to shift a young writers thought from maybe being able to do something to just doing it. I haven’t written in months, and are still my having any real luck, but I know I will write again someday, and I just thought it should be mentioned that you are a good person for encouraging others to do what they love. Best of luck to you…

Thank you so much, Shannon. Your words mean a lot to me. I try to be an advocate for writers and encourage young and new writers to explore their ideas and find their voices. I believe the world would be a better place if we all followed our passions, and more importantly, encouraged others to do so as well.

Conner R.

“Conundrum”

The little girl cries with a lie on her lips The girl can’t remember her name The little boy’s laugh rings with hollow self-doubt The little girl feels just the same A little dog lost in the thick of the woods A little man sick with dismay A little boy born in the arms of the girl A little life born from a day A little death born from an ignorant choice A little boy crying away And a little God laughs at the sight of it all For this little herd has not a say

Thanks for sharing your poem with us, Conner. Keep writing!

Dido Lawrence

It’s the first time that i’m gonna be doing an inter-school creative writing competition, and i found these prompts really helpful! Thanks a billion!

You’re welcome!

Jenny Hutcherson

Really like the prompts! It was really helpful! My brother and I are always gonna use this website! I <3 it!

Thanks! I’m glad you like it here 🙂

Afshin

Thanks Melissa for the writing prompts. I asked my students to develop their writing skill through these useful prompts. By the way, I have published my first fiction ‘Faith No More’. I’d be extremely glad if you could manage to read any of it and provide me with feedback.

Hi Afshin. Thanks for sharing these prompts with your students. Requests for feedback should be sent via email (you can use the “Contact” link at the top of this site).

Caitlyn

i have been major struggling with writing my second book and when i found these i just opened up my mind more and i decided not to write a second book it was just fine without one and now i can be on a whole other spectrum thanks so much these has inspired me a lot i put a few of em together to get ideas 🙂 well done 🙂 highly appreciated

That’s awesome. Thanks for letting me know that these prompts helped you. Good luck with your writing projects!

Mack Jordan

I just got a typewriter at a great market the other day so I came looking for something to help me have fun and get inspired while I was using it. Thanks for the help! I ended up writing a thing about an embarrassing moment that helped me learn how to not sweat it when embarrassing moments happen. This particular one had to do with toilet paper… haha. Cheers!

Embarrassing moments always make for good storytelling. Enjoy your new typewriter!

Susanna

I’ve been really into playwriting lately, but I’ve been stuck with writers block for the longest time. A couple of these prompts really caught my attention and I’ve already got so many new ideas, I don’t know where to begin! 🙂

That’s awesome. I’m glad you found this piece so helpful.

Cass

I have had writers block for months now. This site has helped me so much!

I’m thrilled to hear that! Keep writing!

Luci

My favorite way to start up a story is to listen to a song and think about the story of it. Sometimes I use the first part of the song as the first sentence of my story. I hope this helps.

That’s an awesome idea! I love music-literature crossovers.

Taylor

Hi thank you so much for these ideas i have chosen an idea and i have a perfect picture of my idea . Thank you again and as you will see on all of your comments you have helped a lot of children or adults from this website . Thank you !

You’re welcome! Thanks for commenting.

Mera Sampson

Great prompts.

I shared #9 with my page for a fun writing exercise about an hour ago. Great response! 🙂

Thanks for sharing one of these prompts with your readers. I hope they have fun with it.

Liana C.

Thanks for the prompts! Reading other people’s ideas always makes me feel more hopeful about initiating my own. I have struggled to put my thoughts down on paper for as long as I can remember- there just seems to be a disconnect between the disorganized chaos of possibilities in my head and that little spot where the ink meets the paper. BUT- I wanted to offer an idea that has often provided many interesting and fun possibilities to me- Think of a time of day ( 7 pm, the sun setting, the day cooling off, night creatures beginning to stir), or a month ( August, the air laden with heat and damp, everything deep and green and vibrant), and then try to think of all the qualities that accompany that period of time ( do most people seem happy then? is it a relaxing time? a tense time? does the weather make life easier or harder?). Once you’ve collected as many descriptions and feelings about this time as you can, then begin to build a world where it is ALWAYS that time- how do people’s lives change? 🙂

Ooh, that’s a great exercise. I wasn’t expecting the twist at all! Love it.

roopy

This is awesme. i like these. i like writing prompts, and this is a very helpful website

Thanks! I’m glad you liked these prompts.

tom

omg wow, this helped me so much, thankyou so much!! i love my writing and this just helped me ten fold. xxx

You’re welcome. I’m glad you found it helpful.

Janus

I’ve been writing since i was eight, [approximately (obviously – i haven’t been counting!)] but I started to loose it… flame was REIGNITED by my best friend. but despite the burning, I have never actually completed a story. It knaws at me all the time! I’m currently writing a revolutionary/Sci-fi, which is odd for me, I’m more into writing realist novels… but your prompts gave me such a PERFECT plot twist that I had to comment on it! this will give me motivation for at least a few weeks… (meanwhile dancing up and down with sheer joy and attracting VERY weird looks.) Though it IS kind of weird, because non of the prompts have anything to do with it… My, how strangely the mind works…

Yes, the mind works in mysterious ways. I’m glad one of these prompts inspired you. Best of luck with your story (I love sci-fi).

Tierrney

This website is a life saver. My brain just froze and I was trying to do a creative writing story, and my life and my school / collage life depended on it. Thanks to one of your prompts, it won my school a pride. Thanks a lot. 🙂 bye!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Whoops I meant prize

That’s awesome, Tierrney! Congrats on winning a prize. Keep writing!

Sarah

wow great writing promts, ive already decided on the start of my story but I cant think of anything that can happen. I want something to happen. HELP!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Try throwing some conflict at your main character. Good luck to you!

Kathleen

Wow!! I tried prompt number one just for fun one day, I have not exercised my creative mind in a long time, and I want to thank you for offering these prompts. I really surprised myself at the poem I wrote. It probably wouldnt go over to well with the grammar police because I used old english and standard english.. but the content just really surprised me. I was like, “where did that come from”? Thank you so much!!!! Blessings and Thanks to you for your website!

Thanks for your kind words, Kathleen. I’m so glad you found inspiration here!

kamra schultz

thank you so much i found 3 ideas for a school project i am working on this is going to be one of my most big acomplishments!

You’re welcome! Good luck with your project.

kristina bundhi booduz

i love this website because it helped me get an A on my project!!! i am soo thankfull to WRITING FORWARD!!! thank you sooo much and i am sooo confident that i will be sure to use this website again….thanX a million luv WRIGHTING FORWARD~~kbb

You’re welcome. Congratulations on getting such a good grade!

Khaled Syfullah

Writing comes from the mind and obviously the ideas comes from our real life….The story of mystery novels always comes from the fear we have in our minds and it can come from everything… I can remember the things…when I wrote my first poem ‘Rain’…it was raining in cats and dogs outside…..

I think writing comes from many places. I try not to over-analyze it, but it is interesting to examine our ideas and try to figure out where they came from.

Shreya Jain

I really like your ideas but I had some of my own that I think you could add to your list. You could add things like:

You’re outside cutting your grass when you come across a large hole in the ground. You’ve never noticed the hole before, but it looks to be some sort of tunnel to another world. You decide to peek through and see where it leads, only it leads you to a pivotal moment in your past—and it’s giving you an opportunity to change it. Write this scene.

A toy, stuffed animal, or game that once meant a lot to me

Why I deserve a larger allowance

The book that got me hooked on reading

This really bugs me.

One thing I want to do by the time I finish 8th grade

I would like to have lived during this time in history.

Thanks for adding these writing prompts, Shreya.

Kiara

Start your story with: Jessica had no choice. She closed her eyes and jumped.

You might be surprised.

Ah, that’s an interesting prompt.

Meeper

Here one possibly

What if you woke up one day with no memories in a strange world where nobody was who they said they were?

Meredith

Wow! I really like this list of prompts! I’ve been looking for inspiration to write a short story and I especially liked the one about dragons! “We’ve all seen cute and cuddly dragons, mean and vicious dragons, and noble dragons write about a different dragon”

Thanks, Meredith! I’m glad you liked these writing prompts.

Lindsey Russell

Anyone considered using visual (photos/paintings) prompts?

A scenic view, a city view, a beach, a hill, a house, a village, a car, a train, a plane, a boat, a castle, a body?

Yes, I’ve used visual prompts, and I’ve included them in my book, 1200 Creative Writing Prompts . The image prompts are described (rather than using images), but they’re a lot of fun.

Hallie

Hi I’m Hallie I’m 13 years old and I love writing. Just for some reason I can never think of things to write about. I really like fantasy. I look online for writing prompt ideas and I find a lot of good ones but none of them really click. I really want to write something but I don’t know what. What should I do?

Hi Hallie. Thanks for visiting Writing Forward. What you’re experiencing is fairly common among writers. I have experienced it many times — when I want to write but I don’t know what to write and nothing clicks, I will look through prompts and my old notes, and I just don’t get fired up about anything.

I’ve found that in moments like these, the best thing to do is just write anyway. We can’t feel inspired and fired up all the time. And often, when I force myself to just follow some prompt or writing exercise, even when I don’t really feel like it, I start to get into it and eventually, something clicks.

There will be many times when writing is fun or even thrilling. But I’ve found that the people who stick with writing are those who write even when they’re not especially inspired. Sometimes it’s work. Stick with it, and you’ll experience all these highs and lows. Every single one of them is worth it.

Edith

Wow! I really like the diversity of your prompts, Mellisa. I’ve been writing a collection of short stories of my childhood experience of the Biafran War in Nigeria and struggled with some troubling memories but you’ve reminded me that I could just write everything as it comes to me and revise later. Also, I love your children stories prompts.

Thank you, Edit. That makes my day. I’m always glad when people find the articles here at Writing Forward useful. Good luck with your stories. That sounds like an important project.

MEL

is it weird that when i saw the one on dragons the first thought to my mind is ‘ i counld do one on a gay dragon, right?’ and then when i saw number 4 ( for all the twilight fans, just a heads up), i thought of jasper hale- i’m not calling him ugly- but i saw the fear part and thought to myself how he fears hurting someone/ losing control.

Is it weird? I don’t think it’s weird. The point of the prompts is to engage your imagination, so it seems like they are working, which is great.

Panther

I absolutely love these! I have been writing since I was able to talk. I told my dad exactly what to write down on little pieces of paper. Now that I’m fourteen, I was sure I wrote every idea imaginable. But these really gave me a fresh perspective, and for that, I am so grateful! It also inspired me to come up with a prompt of my own: She sprinted through the trees, quickly twisting around thick trunks as she dodged the sheriff’s arrows. Her stomach ached from the laughs that shook her entire body. Foolish sheriff. He thought he could catch a pirate?

I’m glad you enjoyed these writing prompts. Your prompt is awesome. Keep writing! It will take you places that only you can imagine.

Nora Zakhar

I loved these prompts. I had my friends pick a number between 1 and 25 to chose which on to do. I think they improved my writing skills. Thank you!

I’m glad you enjoyed these prompts, Nora. Thanks for your comment.

Sam Hayes

I am a 13 year old and I love to write. I have a best friend and she always wants to see my writing, but I didn’t want her to see it because I didn’t think it was very good. She insisted on seeing it, and when I showed her the first chapter in a story I was writing just for myself, she thought it was brilliant. She then disguised it as an excerpt from an e-book app and showed it to our English teacher. My friend pretended that it was a real, published book by an actual author and asked for the teacher’s opinion. The teacher loved it and asked for the name of the book. When she discovered it was written by her own pupil, she was shocked and said i should send it to a publisher. Now I am confused. I didn’t think my writing was very good. What should I do now?

Hi Sam. I was your age when I started writing.

There are a few things you might want to do. First, continue working on your book until it’s finished. This will be hard. You will probably lose interest at some point. You’ll get stuck and feel unsure where to take the story. You’ll have other ideas that seem better, and you’ll be tempted to set this story aside. Don’t be deterred. Stick with it.

Do your parents know about your interest in writing? At 13, you would need their involvement in any publishing or submissions that you might want to do. You can also try talking to your teacher. Don’t be shy about this. It’s the job of teachers to guide their students. But keep in mind, not all English teachers are knowledgeable about the publishing industry. See if she can offer some guidance. You might be able to find literary magazine for kids your age and submit your writing so you can start getting some practice in the publishing world.

Beyond that, make sure you read a lot and write as much you can. If you love writing, it’s something that will always be with you. As you get older, you’ll be able to carve out the path you want, whether that’s to make writing a career or continue enjoying it as a hobby.

Best of luck to you!

Kaiya Lakhani

I am 10 and I have written a few short stories of my own, and I really enjoy creative writing. I was very pleased when I found this website, now I won’t be struggling to think about what to write.

That’s wonderful, Kaiya. We love having young writers around here. Thanks so much!

Naomi

I’m 12 and I also really like writing. I have always been trying to write short stories since I was six (I started with mostly seven page picture books). Finding how to start a story has always been pretty hard, but these prompts have really helped! I definitely have to explore some more of these prompts. There are so many! Thank you!!

Wow, Naomi, that’s wonderful. I was just a little older than you (13) when I started writing (poetry for me). You have a long and wonderful journey ahead of you, and I hope you enjoy all of it! You’re welcome for these prompts. I’m so glad you found them helpful.

Britany Garden

Thank you so much for sharing this wonderful post with us.

maddie

the one that has the tailsman remids me of “Wings of Fire” because one of the dragons named darkstalker put is animus magic on a scroll and called it his tailsman and he can read minds so it really reminded me of that book

I haven’t read Wings of Fire but it sounds interesting!

oh and it fell into the wrong hands or really talons but ya i just wanted to share that information thank you for this i really got some good ideas like the detective one

Trackbacks/Pingbacks

  • Writers Block « Sol Searching - [...] Donovan wrote a great article at Writing Forward (http://www.writingforward.com/creative-writing/25-creative-writing-prompts) to help motivate your writing mind. She list 25 creative…
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  • Writing Prompt Resources (Links galore!) – The Talers - […] https://www.writingforward.com/writing-prompts/creative-writing-prompts/25-creative-writing-prompts […]
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The best writing prompts for teens

Are you looking for activity ideas to get kids off social media for half an hour? We've got three words for you: teenage writing prompts. No matter the season, parents and teachers with students in school alike can turn to writing prompts to help your teenager experience growth through writing. Creative writing prompts can help teens engage with their feelings, exercise critical thinking via journaling, and capture daily thoughts about life and the world around them. For immediate impact, this page is chock-full of ideas to get them started!

If you're looking to cut to the chase, here's a top ten list of our favorite writing prompts for teens:

  • A "good witch" and a "bad witch" meet for lunch. What do they talk about?
  • Start your story with “Today’s the day I change.”
  • This was the weekend you'd been waiting for for the past three years.
  • Write a story about a character experiencing independence for the first time.
  • Finish this sentence: "I strongly believe that..."
  • Write a story about a character making a big change.
  • Write a story with a Character versus Character conflict. Think of Elizabeth Bennet vs. Mr. Darcy in Pride and Prejudice.
  • Write a story with a Character versus Nature conflict. Think of Mark vs. Mars in The Martian.

If you have a teen who’s looking to become an author, check out our free resources on the topic:

How to Write a Novel 101 (free course) — Go from zero to hero with our ten-day course to writing a book. Every book differs depending on your genre, but if you look deeper, they all rely on similar basic principles. We take you through all of those elements of a story, from structuring a plot to choosing a POV.

What is Exposition? Examples of Backstory in Action — When writing fiction, anything goes. So how are you going to drip-feed your reader information? Rather than holding their hand through the story, you will want to provide backstory slowly and subtly. That’s where exposition comes in.

How to Develop Characters (free course) — Your characters could make or break your book. Readers may not finish your story if they're not invested enough in the characters you build! Luckily, we've got just the free resource for you: another free ten-day course that will get you thinking about character development in a new way.

Want to encourage teens to start submitting their story? Check out Reedsy’s weekly short story contest for the chance of winning $250! You can also check out our list of writing contests or our directory of literary magazines for more opportunities to submit your story.

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How to Write a Novel

Join Tom Bromley for a writing master class and finish your first draft in 3 months . Learn more →

Explore more writing prompt ideas:

Adults Writing Prompts ⭢

Adventure Writing Prompts ⭢

Angst Writing Prompts ⭢

Character Writing Prompts ⭢

Christmas Writing Prompts ⭢

Dark Writing Prompts ⭢

Dialogue Writing Prompts ⭢

Dramatic Writing Prompts ⭢

Dystopian Writing Prompts ⭢

Fall Writing Prompts ⭢

Fantasy Writing Prompts ⭢

Fiction Writing Prompts ⭢

Fluff Writing Prompts ⭢

Funny Writing Prompts ⭢

Halloween Writing Prompts ⭢

High School Writing Prompts ⭢

Historical Fiction Writing Prompts ⭢

Holiday Writing Prompts ⭢

Horror Writing Prompts ⭢

Kids Writing Prompts ⭢

Middle School Writing Prompts ⭢

Mystery Writing Prompts ⭢

Narrative Writing Prompts ⭢

Nonfiction Writing Prompts ⭢

Novel Writing Prompts ⭢

Poetry Writing Prompts ⭢

Romance Writing Prompts ⭢

Sad Writing Prompts ⭢

Science Fiction Writing Prompts ⭢

Short Story Writing Prompts ⭢

Spring Writing Prompts ⭢

Summer Writing Prompts ⭢

Teens Writing Prompts ⭢

Thanksgiving Writing Prompts ⭢

Thriller and Suspense Writing Prompts ⭢

Valentine's Day Writing Prompts ⭢

Vampire Writing Prompts ⭢

Winter Writing Prompts ⭢

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Story Writing Academy

70 Picture Prompts for Creative Writing (with Free Slides)

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Visual writing prompts help young writers generate new ideas and overcome writer’s block. We’ve put together 70 picture prompts for creative writing that you can use in your writing centers or lesson plans to get your students’ creative juices flowing.

70 PICTURE PROMPTS FOR CREATIVE WRITING TEXT OVERLAY WITH TWO VISUAL WRITING PROMPTS

Picture Writing Prompts for All Ages

Writers of all ages and experience levels can get stuck thinking about what to write. Writer’s block is not just a challenge for reluctant writers. Even professional writers have days when they feel less than inspired.

Visual prompts can result in a vast array of story ideas. A single image viewed by ten writers will result in ten completely different stories. Even if you use verbal cues to get students thinking about the picture, each student will still write a unique response to the image.

Visual creative writing prompts are fantastic for elementary school because younger students often relate more to a pictorial prompt than a written one, but don’t shy away from using these with high school and middle school students as well. Pictures make a fun alternative to your typical writing prompts and story starters and can help shake up your regular routine.

How to Use Picture Prompts for Creative Writing

There’s no limit to the ways you can use writing prompts. Here are some of our favorite ways to incorporate image prompts into your weekly lesson plans .

  • Writing Center. Print cards or writing pages with these images on them and put them in a writing center for your students to discover at their own pace.
  • Specific Skills. Use story picture prompts to help kids work on specific writing skills. For example, you could work on descriptive writing by having them describe the setting of the picture in detail. Or you could work on character development by having them make up a history for a person in a picture.
  • Warm-up Activity: You could pop the pictures into Google slides and project an image on a screen or whiteboard for the first fifteen minutes of class and have students work on a short story as soon as they enter the class.

No matter how you decide to use them—whether at home or in the classroom—photographic writing prompts are a great way to cultivate a daily writing habit and encourage kids to explore new topics.

70 Pictures for Writing Prompts

We’ve selected 70 of the most interesting pictures we could find for this exercise. When choosing photos for writing prompts, we look for high-quality photos with intriguing subject matter, but we try to go beyond that. We want to share images that suggest a story, that make the viewer ask questions and wonder why things are the way they are.

We want to feel propelled to explore questions like, What happened before the photo that led to this moment? What are we witnessing in this photo? What’s about to happen?

A photo doesn’t make much of a story starter if it doesn’t suggest that there might be a bigger picture lurking beneath the surface.

We hope you and your students love these picture prompts for creative writing as much as we do. If you love them, go ahead and scroll to the bottom to grab your own copy.

We’ve included a couple of questions with each picture that you could use to spark pre-writing conversations in your classroom, which can be helpful when working with younger students who might need a little more direction.

interesting creative writing prompts

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Whose cat is this? What is he looking at? Where is he?

a cat sits alone against a blue wall

What is the owl thinking about? Is he alone? What does he hope to eat for dinner?

an owl sits outside

Who are these frogs? What is their relationship with each other? Why are they taking photos?

two toy frogs stand in a field. One takes pictures of the other.

How did the dog get a phone? Why is he taking selfies? What is he doing with the pictures he takes?

a dog lays on a field and takes selfies

This cat doesn’t look too happy. What’s bugging him? Did he get too many phone calls or is he waiting on an important call that’s taking too long to come?

a black and white cat sits beside a phone

What do these chicks think of the dog? What does the dog think of the chicks? Do you think they can communicate with each other? If so, what would they say?

a dog lies beside two chicks

Where do these lemurs live? What are they looking at? What is something unusual that might happen to them?

a lemur lies on a branch while another hides in the background

What is this fox doing? Is he yawning and stretching or is he trying to scare someone away? What kind of mischief does he like to get up to?

a fox stretches and opens its mouth

Is this wolf alone? If not, who is with him? What is he planning to do? Does he have a family to feed or protect?

a lone wolf stands in a misty clearing

What is this child doing on the laptop? Can he actually read and type or is he just playing? If he can read and type, how did he learn that at such a young age? What other cool things can he do?

a toddler wearing a toque and glasses types on a laptop

Where is this woman? Is she lost? How did she get to this street? What interesting things might she discover as she explores this new city?

a woman stands in an empty street holding a map

Why is the dog wearing glasses? Can he see through them? What are he and the girl doing? How does he feel about it?

a woman holds a dog. Both wear glasses.

Who are these two little boys? What is their relationship with each other? What is the teddy bear’s story?

two boys sit in a bath holding a teddy bear

Who are these children? Why are they running? Is it a race or are they playing a game? Who’s going to win?

a group of children run across a field

Whose horse is this? Does the little boy own it or does he just visit it? Can the horse talk? How does the boy feel when he’s with the horse?

a boy sits on a fence and feeds a horse

What is this boy reading? Does the book have magical powers? Does the boy? Do the stories in the book become real or does something else special happen?

a boy reads a book that has some magical elements in it

Where is this man? How did he get there? What is he looking for?

a man dressed like a pirate looks through a telescope

Who is walking over the bridge? What’s on the other side? Is it worth the risk?

a top-down view of a person crossing a bridge

What are these people doing on the elephant? Where are they? Are they tourists or is the elephant their pet? What would life with an elephant be like?

two people ride an elephant through a field

Who made this map? It looks old. Has it been hidden away for a long time? Who discovered it and how? What does it lead to?

an old map

Whose typewriter is this? What important or secretive thing might they be working on? What could happen if the wrong person finds their work?

an old typewriter

Who are these three stuffed animals? Are they living? What is their story?

the backs of three stuffed animals

Whose ukulele is this? Why did they leave it here? Who might find it?

a green ukulele sticks out of the sand

Where is the owner of the bike? Where does this path lead? What if the bike’s not there when the owner returns?

a bike leans against a wooden railing

Whose shoes are these? Why did they leave them here? Why are they so dirty?

a pair of dirty shoes in the mud

Who was reading the newspaper? What was the most interesting thing they read? Where have they disappeared to?

a stack of newspapers, a white cup, and a pair of glasses

Who put this sign on the old truck? What do you think of it? How did the truck end up in its current condition and location?

a deserted old truck

Who set the table? Who are they expecting? What special occasion are they celebrating? What could go wrong?

a fancy table setting

Whose birthday cake is this? Are they having a party? Who is there? Who did they want to have there that didn’t show up?

a birthday cake

Who lives here? How do they access their home? What is their life like?

a home surrounded by water

Who built the igloo? Where is it? How does it feel to spend the night inside it?

an igloo

What is the history of this castle? Who lives in it now? Does it have any special or magical features?

a castle

Is this barn abandoned or do people live on the property? What kind of animals might live here? How do they keep themselves entertained?

a big red barn

What is it like living on a houseboat? What kind of community do you think forms among the neighbors? Imagine you live on one of these boats and think about how your daily life might change. What interesting things could you do if you lived here? What would you miss the most?

a row of houseboats

Where is this hut? Who lives here? What mystery might unfold if a stranger came knocking at their door?

a round hut

What is this lighthouse called? Who runs it? How often do they leave? What is the most memorable experience they’ve had as a lighthouse operator?

a lighthouse

How did this house get here? Does anyone live in it? What would life be like here?

a house on a rock surrounded by water

Where is this festive street? Are the people there celebrating something? Where is everybody?

a colorful European town

Who lives here? How did they build this house? Are they hiding from something? What does it look like inside?

a hobbit house with a yellow door

Whose notebook is this? Why did they leave it here? What’s written in it and how might it change the life of the person who finds it?

a notebook lying on a beach

What are these women doing? What are they supposed to be doing? Will they be in trouble if they get caught?

two women playing on a piece of wood

Who might be represented in this statue? Why is she being pulled by lions? What amazing things might she have done to deserve a statue in this prominent place?

a statue of a woman being pulled in a carriage by two lions

Where is this? Who is riding in the hot air balloons? Where are they going and why?

hot air balloons fly over a town

How old is this tree? Where is it? What are some of the most fascinating stories it could tell?

an old oak tree

Where is this carousel? Who is riding it? Can you think of a special or strange story about how it came to exist in this particular place?

a woman rides a carousel

What are these people thinking about? What’s at stake for them? What happens if one of them sneezes?

tightrope walkers walk on tightropes

Where are these penguins? What are they talking about? Which one of them is the leader?

4 penguins stand in a huddle

What is this place? Was it designed to be open like this or was it once part of someone’s home or a public building? How have people’s opinions of this place changed over time?

a room with statues in it

Who are these kids? Is this what they’re supposed to be doing? What happens when their teacher sees them?

kids play around in a dance studio

Who is supposed to ride in this boat? Where are they going? Will they make it there?

a small boat with a fancy seat

Is this plane special to someone? What did they have to do to get it/build it? Where will they fly to in it?

a yellow plane

Who decorated this train car? Which passengers will fill it up? What will they talk about?

an upscale train car with fancy seats

Whose skis are these? Why are they sticking out of the snow? How did their owner get down the mountain without them?

two skis and two poles stick out of a snowbank

Where does this gondola go? Who rides it? How does it feel to ride it?

a gondola

Who’s driving the monster truck? Why is it at the beach? What is it going to crush? Who is watching?

a monster truck does tricks on a beach

Where is the boat going? Who is on it? What is their mission?

a ship sails away from shore

What city is the helicopter flying over? Why? Is the driver looking for something specific or do they have a special delivery?

a helicopter flies over a city

What’s the little boy doing in the boat? Is he alone or is someone with him? Where is he trying to go?

a little boy holds an oar in a boat

Who is in the sub? What’s it like inside? What are they doing?

a submarine

Whose book is this? What’s it about? What’s happening to it?

a book that has water flowing out of it

How did that piece of land with the house on it break off from the rest of the world? Why? Where is it going? Is anyone in the house?

a fantasy graphic with a piece of land separating from the earth and floating away

Who is this girl? Where is she? Who is she shooting at?

a woman in the woods shoots a bow and arrow

Where does this scene take place? Is the lizard/dragon good or bad? What is its relationship with the girl?

a girl standing on the tip of a cliff pats the nose of a giant lizard

What do these books represent? What kind of world is this? What (or who) is inside the books?

a row of books designed to look like houses

What are these dinosaurs discussing? Where are they? What do they do for fun?

two dinosaurs

Whose cottage is this? Do they still live there? If not, where have they gone? If so, what do they do there?

a fairy tale cottage in the woods

What is the moth thinking about? Is it alone? What’s the biggest challenge it faces in this moment?

a moth on a flower

Who is the owl looking at? Has it read these books? What is its greatest talent?

an owl wearing beside a stack of books

Where are these trees? Why are they pink? Do they have any special powers or features?

trees in a wood covered with something pink

What do you think? Which kind of pictures do you like best for creative writing prompts ? Let us know in the comments.

Tuesday 5th of March 2024

I LOVE these! My daughter has always struggled with written story prompts and an internet search this week convinced me of the value of picture prompts for reluctant readers/writers (https://youcanjournal.com/journal-picture-prompts/ if you're interested!). I'll definitely be using these to help improve her writing skills. Thanks so much!

Tuesday 26th of December 2023

I think the idea of using picture prompts is a great idea. It initiates oral language thus building vocabulary. It allows lends itself to students working in small groups to stimulate new ideas. The prompts engage the students and gives the teacher the opportunity to focus on specific writing skills.

luke elford

Wednesday 13th of December 2023

cloey mckay

Tuesday 17th of October 2023

I tried this with myself and my 6th-grade students, and they love it. it gives room for so much creativity.

Nayyar Abbas

Tuesday 30th of May 2023

This is very good idea and it really works, viewing these one try to think one's own way that what these pictures are telling or asking? I also recommend that this idea should also be given to the students for building their creative instinct.

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interesting creative writing prompts

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300 Fun Writing Prompts for Kids: Story Starters, Journal Prompts & Ideas

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Are you a parent or teacher? Here are 300 fun and creative writing prompts for kids to spark the imagination of young writers everywhere. Use these kids writing ideas as journaling prompts, story starters or just for fun!

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It’s never too early to start writing, and so we’ve created this fun list of 300 creative kids writing prompts for teacher and parents to use.

You’ll love these fun ideas for kids writing prompts to use as creative sparks to get young imaginations writing in no time!

writing prompts for kids

These are perfect to use as kids journal writing prompts, as short story writing prompts, or just for exercises to help students and children of all ages tap into their creativity. Maybe your kids will write an essay, maybe a poem, or maybe even a whole book!

Whether you are a teacher or parent looking to inspire your kids to write, or maybe even an adult who would like to practice writing with a more playful and young-hearted approach, I hope you find these creative writing prompts inspiring!

Buy the Printable Cards!  We will always have this list of 300 kids writing prompts available for free, but I’m very excited to now also offer an  ad-free printable version of these prompts  in my online Etsy shop. Thank you for your support!

The Ultimate List of 300 Fun & Creative Writing Prompts for Kids

#1. Imagine a giant box is delivered to your front doorstep with your name on it. What’s inside and what happens when you open it?

#2. Write a short story about what it might be like if you woke up one morning with a mermaid tail.

#3. Which is better, winter or summer? Write about the reasons why you think winter or summer is better.

#4. Write about what would it be like if you had an alligator as a pet.

#5. If you had $1,000, what would you buy and why?

#6. Write a story using these 5 words: apple, train, elephant, paper, banjo

#7. What do you want be when you grow up and why?

#8. Who is your favorite person on the planet? What do you like most about that person?

#9. If you could have any secret super power, what would you want it to be and why?

#10. Write about 3 places you would like to travel someday. What do these three places have in common?

#11. Write about a time you felt really happy. What happened? What made you feel happy?

#12. Imagine what would happen if someone shrunk you down to be only 1″ tall. How would your life change?

#13. If you were in charge of the whole world, what would you do to make the world a happier place?

#14. Write a story about what it would be like to climb to the very top of the highest mountain in the world.

#15. If you were in charge of planning the school lunch menu, what foods would you serve each day?

#16. What are some of your favorite animals? What do you like about them?

writing prompt card for kids example

#17. Imagine that dogs take over the world. What do they make the humans do?

#18. Write a story about flying to outer space and discovering a new planet.

#19. You are a mad scientist and have invented a new vegetable. What is it called? What does it look like? What does it taste like? Most importantly: Is it safe to eat?

#20. You go to school one morning to discover your best friend has been turned into a frog by an evil witch! How do you help your friend?

#21. Describe what it is like when trees lose all of their leaves in the autumn season.

#22. Write about your favorite sport and why you like it so much.

#23. Imagine what it might be like to live on a boat all the time and write about it.

#24. If you had one wish, what would it be?

#25. Write about what you might do if you have the super power to become invisible.

#26. You are walking through the forest when one of the trees starts talking to you. What does it say? What do you do?

#27. The weather forecast is calling for a blizzard in the middle of the summer. What do you do?

#28. What types of transportation will people have in the future?

#29. What were some of your favorite toys when you very little? Do you still enjoy playing with them?

#30. What would a day in your life be like if you were a movie star?

#31. Imagine you’ve invented a time machine! What year do you travel to?

#32. What are your favorite things to do over summer vacation?

#33. What is your favorite holiday and why?

#34. If you could meet any fictional character from a book, who would it be?

#35. You are writing a travel guide for kids visiting your city. What places do you think they should visit?

#36. What is a food you hate? Write about it!

#37. Imagine what it would be like if there was no electricity. What would be different in your daily routine?

#38. You are building a new city! What types of things do you think your city needs? How will you convince people to move to your new city?

#39. What is your favorite movie? Write your review of the movie and why you think people should watch it.

magic sweater writing prompt for kids

#40. Imagine you get a magic sweater for your birthday. What happens when you wear the sweater? What do you do with these new found magical powers?

#41. You are the security guard at the zoo and someone has stolen a rhinoceros! How do you track down the thief?

#42. You have been invited to have lunch with the queen. What foods do you eat and what topics do you and the queen discuss?

#43. If you could design a school uniform, what types of clothes would you suggest? What colors would they be?

#44. Imagine you are a reporter interviewing a celebrity about their life. What questions do you ask?

#45. You are running a lemonade stand. Describe the steps for how you make lemonade and the types of customers you see during the day.

#46. Write a story about being the ruler of an underwater world.

#47. Write an acrostic poem for the word “treehouse”.

#48. You decide to grow a sunflower, but the sunflower grows so tall it reaches up to the sky! Write about what happens when you decide to climb to the top. What do you discover?

#49. Imagine you look out the window and it is raining popsicles from the sky! Write a story about the experience.

#50. If you could be any animal, which one would you be and why?

#51. If you were on a spaceship, what would you be most excited about seeing?

#52. Do you have any pets at home? Write an essay about how you take care of your pets. If you do not have a pet, what type of pet might you like?

writing prompts for pets

#53. Imagine you are opening a store that only sells items which are blue. What types of items do you sell?

#54. Have you ever lost something that is important to you? Were you able to find it?

#55. Write a story about a kid who is moving to a new school. How do you think they might feel?

#56. Rewrite the ending of your favorite fairy tale. For example, what would have happened if Cinderella never went to the ball?

#57. Have you ever forgotten to do your homework? What happened?

#58. Do you have a favorite song? Write about the type of music you like to listen to.

#59. Imagine your parents wake you up one morning to tell you they will take you to do anything you want to do for the whole day – you don’t even have to go to school or do your chores. What would you choose to do and why?

#60. Do you like amusement parks? What are some of your favorite rides?

#61. Write a story using these three words: detective, piano, and pizza.

#62. Have you ever been to the beach? Write about your favorite things to do. If you have never been to the beach, what would you like to do the first time you visit?

#63. Is there a favorite tv show you like to watch? Write about your favorite character and why they are your favorite.

#64. Write a poem using onomatopoeia , where the words you use are pronounced similar to the sound they make. For example, buzz, bark, sizzle, slam and pop.

#65. Have you ever had to stand in line to wait a long time for something? What did you do while you waited? How did you feel while waiting? How did you feel once the wait was over?

#66. Is it a good idea to keep ALL secrets a secret? Write about examples of when it is okay to spill a secret – and when it isn’t.

#67. Is there something you are good at doing? Write about your best strengths.

#68. What historical time period and location would you go back to live in if you could? Write about it!

#69. Write about 5 things you can do that are important for you to stay healthy and safe.

#70. Do you think thunderstorms are scary? Why or why not?

#71. What would you most like to learn over the next year? Think about things that interest you or questions you might have about the world and make a list!

#72. You are going on a trip to a jungle safari! What items do you pack in your suitcase?

interesting creative writing prompts

#73. Imagine you are sitting at home one day and you hear someone shrieking in the living room they see a mouse in the house! Write a story about what might happen next.

#74. You are writing a letter to someone who is having a hard time making new friends at school. What do you write? What advice do you give them?

#75. Imagine you just met a magician – but their beloved rabbit who they pull out of a hat for all the tricks has been kidnapped! How do you help find the rabbit?

#76. Do you hear what I hear? Set a timer for 5 minutes and write about all of the sounds you hear in those 5 minutes.

#77. Imagine you go to get a haircut and they accidentally shave your head! How do you feel about that and what would you do?

#78. Do you find it easy to talk to people you don’t know? What are some ways you can start up a conversation with someone you have never met before?

#79. Are there any chores you have to do at home? What are they? What do you like – and not like – about each one?

#80. Open up a random book to any page. Write for 5 minutes about the first word you read.

#81. Pretend you are a writer for your city’s newspaper. Who would you like to interview for a news story and why?

#82. There are many fictional characters who live in unusual houses, such as the old woman who lived in a shoe. What kind of unusual house would you like to live in? Write about what it would be like to live in an unusual house!

#83. Write a list of 10 things you can do to practice kindness to others.

#84. Is there a homework subject you dread? Why do you not like getting homework in that subject?

#85. What is your favorite month of the year? Write about why you like it and some of your favorite things to do during that month.

#86. Imagine you are planning a surprise birthday party for someone. How do you keep it a surprise?

#87. Pretend you walked outside to find a sleeping dragon in the grass! Why is the dragon there? Is it a friendly dragon? What do you do? Write about it!

#88. What are you grateful for today and why?

#89. You were on your way to a very important event when you fell into a puddle. Now what?

#90. Have you ever watched a movie and didn’t like how it ended? Write what you think should happen instead.

#91. Can you answer this riddle from Alice in Wonderland ? How is a raven like a writing desk?

#92. Imagine you are the captain of a pirate ship. Write a diary entry for what your day was like.

#93. If you could start any type of business, what kind of business would you start? What types of products or services would you provide?

#94. Write a sequel to one of your favorite fairy tales. For example, what was Goldilocks’s next adventure after she left the bears?

#95. What is something you are afraid of? What helps you to feel less afraid of something? What would you say to a friend who feels scared to help them feel less afraid?

#96. Write a letter to your future self in 20 years.

kids writing prompts and ideas

#97. In addition to basic survival needs such as food, water, air and shelter, what are 3 things you would you need to be happy?

#98. If you could invent a robot of any type who could do anything you imagine, what types of things would you would have the robot to do?

#99. Which do like better? Apples or Oranges? How are they alike? How are they different?

#100. Why did the chicken cross the road? You are a detective and are assigned to the case. How do solve the mystery?

#101. Write instructions for how to make your favorite snack. Be sure you add your favorite tips and suggestions for how to select the best ingredients!

#102. Imagine you borrowed a friend’s favorite lucky pencil to help you pass a math test – but then it snapped in half! How will you ever tell the news to your friend?

#103. Look around the current room you are sitting in and choose 3 random objects that are nearby. Now write a story or poem that includes those three items!

#104. Write a letter to the author of a book you recently read and tell them what you liked most about the book.

#105. Ernest Hemingway is famous for writing a six word story. Can you write a story in just 6 words?

#106. What do you think will be the future for cell phones? Will people still use them in 25 years or will something else take its place?

#107. Do you want to go to college? Why or why not?

#108. Write a story or poem about a kitten who wanders off and gets lost. How does the kitten find its way home?

#109. Currently, it is required by law that kids go to school. Do you think this is a good or bad idea?

#110. If you could invent a new board game, what would it be called? How is it played? What are the rules? What makes it fun to play? Write about it!

#111. Imagine you come home to discover your entire bedroom is covered in ketchup! What on earth happened? What is your reaction? How do you clean everything up?

#112. What is something you learned today?

#113. Would you rather have a goldfish or shark as a pet?

#114. From A-Z: make a list of something for every letter of the alphabet.

#115. Have you ever gone fishing? If you have, did you like it? Why or why not? If you haven’t, do you think you might want to?

#116. What is one of the most important things you do each and every day?

#117. Write a story about Gretchen the Grouch, a girl who is always angry! Will she ever be happy? Why is she so grumpy all of the time?

#118. How do you feel when someone takes something of yours without asking? What is a good way to deal with it when that happens?

#119. Write a poem that starts with the word “if”.

#120. Write a story about a family of rabbits who live in the woods. What are some of the challenges they face?

#121. What clothes do you think are the most comfortable? What kind of clothes do you like to wear the most? What clothes do you NOT like to wear?

#122. Imagine there are no grocery stores and you must get your own food. What are some of the ways you find food? What types of things do you eat?

#123. What are 3 things you can do that are good for the environment?

#124. If you could meet any famous person today, who would you want to meet and why? What questions might you ask them?

#125. A tongue twister is a quick poem where many of the words start with the same letter and are similar in sound. For example, “Peter picked a peck of pickled peppers.” Try writing your own with this fun kids writing prompt!

#126. What is the first thing you think of when you hear or see the word green?

#127. A hero is someone who is admired for their courage and achievements. What do you think makes someone a hero? Who are some of your heroes?

#128. What did you do during summer vacation last year? What do you want to do for summer vacation this year?

#129. Write a story about a super hero dog who saves the day! Who does the dog help and why?

kids journal prompts

#130. Would you rather live somewhere that is always cold, or somewhere that is always hot? Write about which one you would rather choose.

#131. Have you ever volunteered to help a charity? If so, write about the experience! If not, what are some charities you think you might like to volunteer for?

#132. What does the word courage mean to you?

#133. What makes you unique? What are some things about you that make you an individual?

#134. Have you ever been to a museum? What is your favorite thing to look at on display?

#135. What can you do to set a good example for others to be kind?

#136. A Tall Tale is a story that exaggerates something that actually happened. Write a tall tale about something that recently happened to you.

#137. What is one of your favorite toys that you think you might still want to have and play with when you are 22 years old?

#138. Oh no! Everyone around you is sick with a nasty cold! Write a silly poem about how you try to avoid catching their germs!

#139. Personification is when a non-living object takes on human characteristics. Write a story where you personify a common electronic gadget in your house, such as the Television or toaster.

#140. Write a poem using similes, which is when you say an object is like something else. Here is an example of a simile: “Her eyes were as blue as the sky.”

#141. Have you ever read a book written by Dr. Suess? Write your own “Suess-style” story, complete with rhymes and made up words.

#142. Do you have any siblings? Think about what it might mean to be a good brother or sister and write about it!

#143. Make a list of questions to interview your parents or grandparents about what it was like when they were growing up as a kid. Then, ask them the questions and write about their answers!

#144. You are in charge of writing a new radio show just for kids! What topics will you talk about? What music do you play?

#145. What do you usually eat for breakfast every day? What, in your opinion, is the greatest breakfast food ever created? What makes it so great?

#146. Write a 12 line poem where every line is about a different month of the year.

#147. What is something you look forward to doing the most when you are an adult?

Use these prompts in your classroom!  Get the  ad-free printable version of these prompts  to inspire your students to write! Thank you for your support!

#148. Do you like to try new things? What is something new you have tried recently or would like to try?

#149. Imagine what it might be like to be alive in Egypt when the pyramids were built. Write about what it was like.

#150. A credo is a statement of personal beliefs. Try writing your own credo for things that you believe in and feel are important.

#151. The circus has come to town but they have no place to perform! How do you help the ringmaster find a place to put on a show?

circus lion

#152. Do you like to act? What are some of your favorite actors or actresses? What do you think makes someone a good actor or actress?

#153. “Practice makes perfect” is a popular saying. What is something you like to practice so you can become better at it? A sport? A musical instrument? A special skill? Do you like to practice?

#154. Write about what it might be like to be water drops freezing and turning into ice.

#155. Do you think it is important to keep your room clean? What do you like about having a clean room?

#156. Imagine your parents are sending you away for a two week summer camp trip. Would you be excited? Why or why not?

#157. What are you currently learning about in history class? Write a fictional story about someone from the past you are learning about.

#158. Many wars have been fought in the past. Instead of going to war, what do you think countries could do to resolve their differences peacefully?

#159. Every year over 8 billion plastic bottles and cans are thrown away. What are some things you can do to help encourage your family and friends to recycle?

#160. Imagine if you were the principal of the school. What might you do differently? What things would you do that are the same? Write about it!

#161. Pretend that one day you are at your neighbor’s house and you notice a strange noise coming from the basement. You go downstairs to investigate to see a large machine running with many lights and buttons. Why is it there?

#162. Write an essay that starts with the line, “Tomorrow, I hope…”

#163. If you could give one thing to every child in the world, what would you want to give them?

#164. Do you have a piggy bank at home? How do you earn money to add to your savings?

writing ideas for kids

#165. What qualities make a house a home? What are 3 things you think every house should have?

#166. Would you rather go scuba diving or rock climbing? Write about which one you think you would like to do more and why.

#167. Do you think it is a good idea for kids to write a daily journal? What are some of the benefits of writing every day?

#168. Do you like watching fireworks or are they too noisy? Write about a time when you saw fireworks in the sky.

#169. Oh no! Your friend has turned into a statue! How did this happen? What do you do? Does your friend ever turn back into a person again?

#170. If you could be any movie character, who would you be and why?

#171. A mysterious message appears in code on your computer screen. What could it mean?

#172. If you could go to work with one of your parents for a day, what do you think the day would be like? What types of things do your parents do at work all day long?

#173. Imagine you are the President and you are creating a new national holiday. What is your holiday about? How is it celebrated? What day of the year do you celebrate? Write about it!

#174. You won a never-ending lifetime supply of spaghetti noodles! What will you do with all of these noodles?

#175. Would you rather be a bunny rabbit or a hawk? Why did you choose the one you chose?

#176. Your teacher has been acting mysterious lately. After school one day, you notice a weird green light shining through underneath the door of your classroom. What do you do? What is happening with your teacher?

#177. Write an article about tips for how kids can be more organized and study well for tests.

#178. Look at any product in your house and read the ingredients labels. Research what each ingredient is. Do you think these ingredients are good or bad for people?

#179. If you were a doctor, what do you think would be the most important part of your job every day?

#180. The school librarian needs your help! A truck just arrived with 2,000 books and she can’t fit all the books onto the shelves! What do you do? How do you find a place to put all these books?

#181. Do you think it would be fun to plant a garden? What types of plants would you want to grow? Write about your garden ideas.

#182. What is a sport or activity you would like to try playing for the first time?

#183. Do you think kids should be allowed to do the same things as adults? What things do you think kids should be able to do that only grown-ups can?

#184. Imagine you and your parents switch places for a day. Your parents are the kids and you are now in charge! What would you do?

#185. Write a get-well letter to someone who has been sick. What can you say to make them feel better?

#186. If you could visit any planet in the solar system, which planet would you like to visit the most and why? Write about what it might be like.

#187. Have you ever been to a farm? What did you like about it? If you haven’t been to a farm, do you think you might like to visit one? Why or why not?

#188. The mayor of the city has a big problem and needs your help! What is the problem and how will you solve it?

#189. Pretend your little sister ate carrots for dinner and the next morning woke up with rabbit ears!  How did this happen? What do you do? Will she be a rabbit forever?

#190. Imagine you wake up in the morning to find out you get to relive any day of your life again for the whole day. What day would you want to experience again and why?

#191. Do you think you might like to be a firefighter? Why or why not?

fire fighter writing prompt

#192. You are a lawyer and your client has been accused of stealing a car. How do you convince the jury your client is innocent?

#193. Think of the four elements: fire, air, earth, and water. Which of these four elements do you like the best?

#194. What would you do if you could be invisible for a whole day? Do you think you would enjoy it or be glad to be back to normal the next day? Write about it!

#195. Imagine you are a meteorologist and people are starting to get angry that your weather predictions are always wrong. What do you do?

#196. If you could create any law, what would it be? Why do you think the law is an important one to have?

#197. You are going incognito and need to hide to your identity so you aren’t recognized or discovered while you walk through the city. What type of disguise do you wear?

#198. Write a persuasive letter to your parents explaining why you should get a new pet. Make sure you provide a convincing argument they won’t be able to refuse!

#199. Your friend wants to do something dangerous. What should you do?

#200. How do you think the world would be different if there were no oceans?

#201. What do you do when someone disagrees with your opinions? Is there a better way to handle conflicting opinions?

#202. What do you think you as a kid could do to help encourage more people to read?

#203. Do you have a good luck charm? What makes this item lucky? When do you use it? How do you use it?

#204. What is at the end of a rainbow? Imagine you follow a rainbow to the end. What do you discover? Is it a pot of gold, or something else?

Use these prompts in your classroom!  Get the  ad-free printable version of these prompts  to inspire your students to write! Thank you for your support!

#205. What do you think the consequences should be for someone who is caught cheating on a test at school?

#206. Imagine you are riding your bike one day when you encounter an older kid who wants to steal your bike. What do you do?

#207. You are the lead singer and star of a famous rock and roll band, but there is one problem – your drummer is jealous of your fame! How do you solve this situation?

#208. If you could help a group of kids in any part of the world, what kids would you want to help the most and why? What are some things you think would help these kids?

#209. Everyone knows the house on the end of the street is haunted. What are some of the strange things that happen there? Why is the house haunted?

#210. You notice at school one day there is a door to a secret passage next to the janitor’s closet and decide to explore. Where does it lead? Why is it there? Do you go alone or bring a friend along?

#211. A bucket list is a list of things you want to accomplish in your lifetime. What are 5 things on your bucket list?

#212. Imagine the perfect treehouse or clubhouse for you and all of your friends as a place to hang out. Describe what it is like inside.

#213. Do you get bored easily? Make a list of things you can do whenever you feel like you are bored and there is nothing fun to do!

#214. Now vs. Then: Think about how today is different from one year ago. How have you changed? What things in your life are different?

#215. Write your autobiography about your life.

#216. It’s a heat wave! What do you do when the weather is hot? What are some of your favorite ways to stay cool?

#217. What are three important safety tips every kid should know to stay safe?

#218. What genre of books do you like to read the most? Write about the characteristics of the genre and list some of your favorite books as examples.

#219. Holiday Traditions: How does your family celebrate the different holidays and events? What are some traditions you do each and every year?

#220. Imagine one day in science class a science experiment goes terribly wrong and now you and all of your classmates have superpowers! What are your superpowers and what do you do with them?

superheroes writing prompts for kids

#221. Who is favorite teacher? Why are they your favorite?

#222. You are baking a cake, but you accidentally put salt in the cake instead of sugar. Nobody will eat it! How do you feel? What will you do next time?

#223. Do you think it is important to have good table manners? What do you think some good manners to practice might be?

#224. Many schools no longer teach cursive handwriting. Do you think this is a good or bad thing? Do you know how to write cursive handwriting? Would you like to learn if you haven’t?

#225. If you were the owner of a theme park, what types of rides and attractions would have? Describe what they would be like and why people would want to visit your park.

#226. Your parents give you $100 to spend at the grocery store. What do you buy and why?

#227. Some people who are alive today grew up without computers or video games. What would you do if you didn’t have a computer or video games? How would life be different?

#228. You walk into your living room and discover there is a giant elephant standing there. How did the elephant get there? What do you do about it? How do you explain the elephant in the living room to your parents?

#229. Have you ever had a weird dream? What happened in the dream? What do you think it means?

#230. Do you like to draw or paint? Write a story inspired by a painting, doodle, or sketch.

#231. You are being sent on a mission to outer space to live in a space station for 5 years. What supplies do you pack and why?

#232. What is the scariest creature alive on earth? Describe in detail what makes it so horrifying.

#233. What do you think your pet might say if they could talk to you?

#234. Imagine your school is putting on a talent show. What act will you perform? What other acts will be in the show?

#235. If you could breathe under water, what would you do?

#236. What time of day do you think school should start? Write a convincing argument on why or why not the time of day school starts should change.

#237. If you were to start your own YouTube video channel, what would the videos on your channel be about?

#238. Do you like to cook? What are some things you like to make and eat?

#239. Your school is having a field day and you are in charge of planning the activities and games. What types of activities and games would you plan for the event?

#240. If you had a remote control drone that takes video of everything it sees from the sky and you could take it anywhere, what would you film? For example, the inside of a volcano or soar it over the plains of Africa.

#241. The Bermuda Triangle is an area of the ocean where many ships and planes have gone missing. Why do you think this could be? Write a story about what it might be like to travel there.

#242. There are 7 great wonders of the world – which one do you think is the most wonderful?

#243. If you could speak any foreign language fluently, which one would you like to speak and why?

#244. You are inventing a new flavor of ice cream! What is the new flavor called and what ingredients do you need to make it?

#245. Would you rather go to a baseball game or read a good book? What reasons do you have for your choice?

#246. You walk outside to get your mail and your mailbox starts talking to you! What does your mailbox have to say?

#247. Imagine you are a famous person. What are you most famous for? What is it like to be famous?

#248. What do you think would be the most fun job in the world to have? Give examples of why you think it would be a fun job to have.

#249. Write a poem about an object that is shiny and dazzling.

#250. Do you like to watch the Olympics? Why or why not? If yes, what is your favorite Olympic sport?

#251. What kind of car do you want to drive when you are older? Do you think learning to drive will be easy or hard?

#252. What do you think would make for a great gift to give someone on their birthday?

#253. Describe a time when you needed help and someone helped you. What did they help you with and how did it make you feel?

#254. If you could be any type of fruit or vegetable, what would you be and why?

Love these prompts?  Get the  ad-free printable version of these prompts  to use at home or in the classroom!

#255. Do you think it is more important to have a good imagination or have all the facts proven?

#256. Do you have a favorite aunt, uncle, or another relative? Write a story about their life and why you like to be with them.

#257. Think of a time you laughed really, really hard. What was so funny? Why were you laughing? Write about it!

#258. Write a poem about an emotion. For example: happy, sad, angry, embarrassed, guilty.

#259. Do you ever have a hard time falling asleep? What are some things that help you feel sleepy?

#260. If you could drive a car, where would you drive and why?

#261. Imagine you are trading places with your friend for a day. What will it be like to be at their house? What will your friend think while they are at your house? Write about it!

#262. If you could break a world record, what would it be? What do you think would be necessary to be able to break the world record?

#263. Imagine you live in Colonial times. What would it be like to grow up as a kid in Colonial America?

#264. You are building a new city. What is the name of your city? What is the weather like? What buildings will you build?

#265. What do you think it would be like to work as a sailor on big ship in the ocean each day?

ocean writing prompt

#266. Imagine you are the teacher for the day. What types of activities do you make the students in the class do?

#267. How would you feel if your parents told you that you would be getting a new baby brother or sister? Write about it!

#268. Do you know any good jokes? What are some of your favorite jokes? What makes them funny? Do you think you could write your own?

#269. Imagine you are floating down a river on a raft. What types of things can you see from the river that you normally wouldn’t see from the land?

#270. You want to start a new hobby collecting something. What kinds of things would you collect and why?

#271. Your mom announces she is having a yard sale. Would you let her sell any of your things? Why or why not?

#272. Imagine you walk out your front door one morning and it is raining popcorn! What do you do?

#273.  You are camping in the woods one night and hear a scary noise. What do you do? What might be the cause?

#274. What do you think might make kids really happy to go to school? What are some things you think schools should do so that it could be more fun?

#275. Today’s lunch at the cafeteria was unusually horrible. You are a detective on the case to investigate. What do you think is the cause?

#276. If you had a tree that grows money, what would you do?

#277. What would you do if you had a unicorn as a pet?

#278. Would you rather go to the zoo or go to the aviary? Which one would you pick and why?

#279. What are some safety tips you should follow when riding a bike?

#280. You are designing the cover of a magazine. What are some of the headlines on the cover?

#281. Are you afraid of the dark? Why or why not?

#282. If you could learn to play any type of musical instrument, which one would you like to learn how to play and why?

#283. Imagine you are playing a sport that involves a ball, such as soccer, baseball or kickball. What would it be like if the ball could talk?

#284. You come home to discover a friendly alien has been living in your closet. What do you do? Why is there an alien in your closet?

#285. Is there something you are afraid of that you wish you weren’t afraid of? Write about it.

#286. Write about the best party you’ve ever been to. What made the day fun and special?

#287. What makes you feel loved and cared about? What are some ways people can show you that they love and care about you?

#288. There is a kite flying competition coming up and you are going to design your own kite. What will your kite look like? What colors will it be? Will it have any certain shape?

#289. You are given the challenge to drop an egg on the floor – without it breaking! What are some things you might try to make sure the egg won’t break?

#290. What are some of the things you can do every day to stay healthy?

#291. Do you think grown-ups are boring? Why do you think they are so boring all of the time? What is something fun that boring grown-ups could do instead of being so boring?

#292. Write a lyrical poem or song about what kids do while they are at school all day long.

#293. What are the first things you like to do when you are done with school each day? What are some of the activities you like when you are not at school?

#294. Imagine dinosaurs were still alive today. How do you think our lives would be different?

#295. Would you rather visit a volcano or a desert? Which one would you choose and why?

#296. Is there a sound you think is annoying? What types of sounds drive you crazy? Write about them!

#297. What do you think it would be like to be the size of an ant for a day? What types of things would you do?

Writing Prompt: What would it be like if your teddy bear came to life?

#298. Imagine one of your stuffed animals comes to life and starts talking to you. What types of things will you talk about? What will you do?

#299. What makes you feel happiest? Write about the things in life that make you feel happy!

#300. Imagine there is no gravity. What kind of things would you do you for fun? How would some of the things you already do for fun be different?

Buy the Printable Cards!  We will always have this list of 300 kids writing prompts available for free, but I’m very excited to now also offer an  ad-free printable version of these prompts  in my online Etsy shop. Thank you for your support!

Parents and teachers, I hope you enjoyed these 300 writing prompts for kids and that you will use them to inspire your children’s creative imaginations.

These prompts of course can be used in a number of different ways and can be adapted for a variety of different styles of writing !

What do you think? Do you think these are good conversation and story starters for kids? Do you have any ideas for writing prompts you would like to share?

And of course, if you’d like to make it super fun and easy to use these prompts at home or in your classroom, be sure to get our ad-free printable version of these kids writing prompt cards now available in my Etsy shop.

We’d love to hear your thoughts on different creative writing ideas and topics for kids to write about! Share your thoughts in the comments below!

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Chelle Stein wrote her first embarrassingly bad novel at the age of 14 and hasn't stopped writing since. As the founder of ThinkWritten, she enjoys encouraging writers and creatives of all types.

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48 comments.

These are awesome! I feel like answering the questions myself! Thanks a million!

Thanks! Glad you enjoyed them! 🙂

Lovely and amazing help

I wrote all 300! but my fingers hurt badly now. :l But i got to admit these are exellent questions!

Hi. Thanks for this list. So many great ideas. I will definitely use some of them for my Language Arts class.

hi people THIS WAS SO LONG but so worth it for my class thx mate

This was great for homework

Thank you for the topics. It was really helpful

Your writing prompts are awesome

These are amazing! Thank you so much for sharing. I will definitely be using it with my kids.

Thank you! I hope they enjoy the writing prompts!

I love these, they are awesome and very helpful too. Thank you very much.

these questions hooked me on easily thanks your the best!

They are all good prompts

This is always good and improves the brain.

These are very useful and very enjoyable topics, i enjoy by giving these to my students , their creations are marvelous

It’s was very long but worth it

This is good. I love it. It helps me in my studies. I share it with my friends children that likes the writing. We love it. Please, think of another writing.

Thanks! Worth printing and providing for my middle school students as a first week of the year activity. Must have taken you ages to come up with all 300 of these!

I’m glad to hear you can use them for your students! It did take some time, but it’s well worth it knowing it might inspire kids to write! 🙂

You need a printable version of this!!

Hi Katelyn, we have one! https://gumroad.com/UBnsO Hope you enjoy!

The link doesn’t seem to be working for me… Could you send me a copy of the list, please?

Hi Tori, the printable version of this post is available as an ad-free paid upgrade – you can purchase it through my Gumroad store: https://gum.co/UBnsO

I quite liked your ideas, I’ll try a few, surely!

How long did it take for you guys to make 300 ideas?

Definitely took some time Vilenti, but it was definitely worth writing all of them! Our prompts reach over a million people a year and are used in literacy, poverty, and mental health programs worldwide. 🙂

These were awesome, thanks a TON

i have school work and this is one thing i do.

i do this for school work to

i do this for school work

Hello Chelle, thanks a lot for this. During these tough Covid times, I find your list to be a great idea to engage kids. Have got them started on some today. Hopefully this will be a long term engagement for them.

The prompts are grrrreat

This was really helpful i have looked for a lot of these, that have a lot of topics and only found one other good one and finished it all, i got to 17 and was like are they all this good! And they all are so thanks!

Glad you enjoyed them!

These are awesome

These are amazing! Thank you so much for sharing.

I loved looking at these prompts!! They were very helpful. I am loving writing and supporting my claims with these prompts. You should post more ideas!! Thanks for sharing the prompts.

Do you have any more?

This really was think written

I’d like to use a few of your questions in a journal for adults that I am creating for sale. I will absolutely credit you at the beginning of the book. Is that okay with you or not? I don’t want to infringe on any copyright laws. I think I used about ten of them.

Hi Kristen, you cannot use these prompts for products for sale, that would definitely be an infringement on copyright. These prompts can only be used for non-commercial use.

this is the greatest app ever

I like all the questions

thank you for all the ideas they are so good

OMG These are all very good and many questions i like all these Thankyou soooooooooooo much for these

I’m in class doing this and it is so fun yes every body is doing this

I LOVE these! My daughter and I stumbled across a post full of fun writing prompts on another website but they were more geared for adults. This list is HUGE and perfect for us to tackle together. Thank you! ❤️

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Solar Eclipse 2024 Writing Prompt Activities

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FREEBIE Total Solar Eclipse Writing Prompt Worksheets

This product is a small token of appreciation for all my wonderful followers. Thank you for visiting my store and keeping me motivated to create new products. Please don't forget to show some love by leaving feedback on this product. Enjoy!

Get ready to embark on an astronomical adventure with our Solar Eclipse 2024 Writing Prompt Activities! Designed to captivate the young minds, these activities blend creative expression with key educational concepts, ensuring a memorable learning experience as we anticipate the total solar eclipse on April 8, 2024. Each activity is crafted to spark curiosity, enhance literacy skills, and deepen understanding of this celestial phenomenon.

Educational Benefits:

  • Getting ready for the eclipse writing prompt; First, Next, Then and Finally.
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Answer Key Not Included

How to Use These Worksheets:

  • Skill Practice
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IMAGES

  1. 70 Creative Writing Prompts

    interesting creative writing prompts

  2. 30 Idea Writing • JournalBuddies.com

    interesting creative writing prompts

  3. Creative Writing Topics for Kids

    interesting creative writing prompts

  4. 28 Creative Writing Exercises and Prompts

    interesting creative writing prompts

  5. Creative Writing Topics for All Ages

    interesting creative writing prompts

  6. 62 Prompts for Creative Writing (Part 2/4) • JournalBuddies.com

    interesting creative writing prompts

COMMENTS

  1. 1800+ Creative Writing Prompts To Inspire You Right Now

    Here's how our contest works: every Friday, we send out a newsletter containing five creative writing prompts. Each week, the story ideas center around a different theme. Authors then have one week — until the following Friday — to submit a short story based on one of our prompts. A winner is picked each week to win $250 and is highlighted ...

  2. 100 Creative Writing Prompts for Writers

    Click to continue. *****. 100 Creative Writing Prompts for Writers. 1. The Variants of Vampires. Think of an alternative vampire that survives on something other than blood. Write a story or scene based on this character. 2. Spinning the Globe.

  3. 365 Creative Writing Prompts

    14. The Found Poem: Read a book and circle some words on a page. Use those words to craft a poem. Alternatively, you can cut out words and phrases from magazines. 15. Eavesdropper: Create a poem, short story, or journal entry about a conversation you've overheard. Printable Ad-Free 365 Writing Prompt Cards. 16.

  4. 199+ Creative Writing Prompts To Help You Write Your Next Story

    A long list of creative writing prompts and writing ideas. 1. Symphony of the Skies. Imagine a world where music can literally change the weather. Write a story about a character who uses this power to communicate emotions, transforming the skies to reflect their inner turmoil or joy. 2.

  5. 105 Creative Writing Prompts to Try Out

    15 Funny Writing Prompts. #1: Write a story which starts with someone eating a pickle and potato sandwich. #2: Write a short script where the plot has to do with evil dolls trying to take over something. #3: Write about writers' block.

  6. 70 Creative Writing Prompts to Inspire You to Write

    Creative Writing Prompts Can Boost Your Writing Skills. Using writing prompts can boost your creativity and improve your writing skills in a number of ways by: Helping to overcome writer's block. Exercising your imagination. Increasing your rate of practice. Teaching you more about yourself.

  7. 25 Creative Writing Prompts to Ignite Your Creativity

    Creativity. 25 Creative Writing Prompts to Ignite Your Creativity. Ignite your creativity with 50 unique creative writing prompts, designed to inspire your next masterpiece. Brooks ManleySeptember 1, 2023March 7th, 2024. Creative writing is a vast and dynamic field that offers a platform for individuals to express their ideas, emotions, and ...

  8. 45 Creative Writing Prompts to Boost your Inspiration

    If you're looking for daily writing prompts, here's a list that can help you stick to your writing routine. Keep a gratitude journal and write in detail about the things you're grateful for. Listen to conversations and write down interesting dialogue. Eavesdrop at a coffee shop or on a bus, and take notes! Write about a different person ...

  9. The Only 10 Creative Writing Prompts You Need

    Next time you're stuck, use this writing prompt. […] Writing Prompt: Monster - […] all you need to give your writing a boost is an inspiring writing prompt. And when it comes to…. 3 Writing Prompts to Tap Into Your Creative Well - The Write Practice - […] Writing prompts are wonderful tools to get the words flowing.

  10. 70+ Clever Creative Writing Prompts (& 6 Brainy Bonus Tips)

    Here are 6 bonus writing tips to help you on your journey: 1. Make Time to Write. If you're not setting aside time to write, you may as well ignore every other piece of advice in this post. Make your writing time sacred and block it off in your calendar. Turn off your phone.

  11. Creative Writing Prompts

    Babbling Brook. Every writer needs a little inspiration once in a while. For today's prompt, nature has a voice. Need an idea to help you get started writing? You'll find hundreds of fun writing prompts here - perfect for beginning a new novel or short story, or simply giving your writing muscle a workout.

  12. 400+ Writing Prompts: Endless Inspiration for Your Writing

    Here are 25 Writing Prompts about Morals and Values: Write about a time when you were wrong and didn't realize it for maybe years. Consider morals and how one discovers what truly matters to them. Portray the biggest value in your life. Dissect the biggest problems in the world and how it impacts us every day.

  13. 51 Creative Writing Prompts for Adults

    5. By day, you're a responsible, if reclusive, college student. By night, you fly over your city as a dragon. 6. On the advice of her therapist, you write about a character from her dreams, and they show up at your door. 7. Your significant other interrupts your work one day to say, "I need to tell you something.".

  14. 140 Creative Writing Prompts For Adults

    Use these creative writing prompts for adults to get you started on the right path to a successful story and suffer from writer's block for the last time. . This list of writing prompts for adults can be taken and used in any way you want. Details can be changed and characters can be added or removed. They are meant to be a fun way to get ...

  15. Creative Writing Prompts

    Here are 365 Creative Writing Prompts to help inspire you to write every single day! Use them for journaling, story starters, poetry, and more! ... Here are 300 fun and creative writing prompts for kids to spark the imagination of young writers everywhere. Use these kids writing ideas as journaling prompts, story starters or just for fun!

  16. 25 Creative Writing Prompts

    Creative Writing Prompts. Today I'd like to share a mash-up of creative writing prompts, all of which come from 1200 Creative Writing Prompts. There are no rules. Write a poem. Write a short story. Write an essay. Aim for a hundred words or aim for a hundred thousand. Just start writing, and have fun.

  17. 128 Creative Journal Prompts (Updated!) » JournalBuddies.com

    Creative Journal Prompts is newly updated (August 2022) — Hooray! Here you will discover loads of fun, fabulous creative writing prompts and ideas for writers of all ages and stages of life. Best of all, this list of ideas has been updated and EXPANDED from 63 ideas to 128 wonderful creative writing prompts. Wow!

  18. 20 creative writing prompts that you can do in 10 minutes

    For a quick creative writing exercise, try one of the 20 writing prompts below, excerpted from Chronicle Books' 642 Tiny Things to Write About. Each prompt was created by a writing teacher at the San Francisco Writers Grotto to be done in 10 minutes or less. For a bigger creative challenge, do one writing prompt a day for 20 days.

  19. Best Teens Writing Prompts of 2023

    Finish this sentence: "I strongly believe that..." Write a story about a character making a big change. Write a story with a Character versus Character conflict. Think of Elizabeth Bennet vs. Mr. Darcy in Pride and Prejudice. Write a story with a Character versus Nature conflict. Think of Mark vs. Mars in The Martian.

  20. 70 Picture Prompts for Creative Writing (with Free Slides)

    Pictures make a fun alternative to your typical writing prompts and story starters and can help shake up your regular routine. How to Use Picture Prompts for Creative Writing. There's no limit to the ways you can use writing prompts. Here are some of our favorite ways to incorporate image prompts into your weekly lesson plans. Writing Center.

  21. 20 Fun Writing Prompts to Help Maintain a Daily Habit

    Writing every day can boost self-awareness and mental health, and writing prompts can ease the pressure that comes with sitting down to start the creative process. So if you're committed to a daily writing habit over the summer but know that you may encounter a summer slump, here's a good place to start—with 20 fun, short writing prompts ...

  22. 300 Creative Writing Prompts for Kids

    Here are 300 fun and creative writing prompts for kids to spark the imagination of young writers everywhere. Use these kids writing ideas as journaling prompts, story starters or just for fun! We may receive a commission when you make a purchase from one of our links for products and services we recommend. As an Amazon Associate we earn from ...

  23. Solar Eclipse 2024 Writing Prompt Activities by FUN DRILLS

    Get ready to embark on an astronomical adventure with our Solar Eclipse 2024 Writing Prompt Activities! Designed to captivate the young minds, these activities blend creative expression with key educational concepts, ensuring a memorable learning experience as we anticipate the total solar eclipse on April 8, 2024.