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100 Wonderful One Word Prompts for Writers

Inspire Creativity with One Word Prompts and Topics — Yes! Whether your students are beginning writers or seasoned journalling pros, sometimes everyone could use a little extra inspiration.

One Word Writing Ideas for All Ages

Of course, there are plenty of ways to jumpstart creativity, but we’ll always be partial to the new ideas that stem from writing prompts!


Writing prompts come in all forms, but they can sometimes be as simple as even a single word. One word prompts truly have the power to showcase creativity, as they inspire each student to interpret and reflect in their own unique way.

This wonderful list of 100 one-word writing prompts is designed to give writers of all ages a fresh creative start. Since each prompt is just a single word, students will naturally come up with individualized ways of approaching the topic—particularly with prompts such as the words “present” or “space” that can have multiple meanings.

Ok, get to it and…

Encourage your students to simply begin writing and to go along in any direction that feels inspiring in the moment!

100 One Word Prompts for Writers of All Ages

One word prompts are all about starting with something small and experiencing the wonder of where you find yourself in the end. Use these one word prompts whenever your students need a fresh creative journey. You could print the entire list out and cut the prompts apart to add to a jar for students to select individually.

  1. Friend
  2. Space
  3. Sunshine
  4. Present
  5. Smile
  6. Love
  7. Tomorrow
  8. Nourish
  9. Ball
  10. Cost
  11. Winter
  12. Beauty
  13. Rain
  14. Happiness
  15. Camp
  16. Direction
  17. Age
  18. Friday
  19. Royal
  20. Hunger
  21. Loss
  22. Tree
  23. Mirror
  24. Empty
  25. Money
  26. Hair
  27. Inspire
  28. Door
  29. Excess
  30. Luck
  31. Intelligence
  32. Gratitude
  33. Water
  34. Beginning
  35. Responsibility
  36. Animal
  37. Country
  38. Assignment
  39. Special
  40. Mystery
  41. Hero
  42. Dreaming
  43. Boredom
  44. News
  45. Rebel
  46. Glitter
  47. Blue
  48. Parents
  49. Train
  50. Candle
    One Word Prompts for All Writers
  51. Strength
  52. Goodbye
  53. Surprise
  54. Game
  55. Eyes
  56. Doctor
  57. Quiet
  58. Promise
  59. Excitement
  60. Answers
  61. Glass
  62. Internet
  63. September
  64. Dance
  65. Myth
  66. Hands
  67. Sweet
  68. Light
  69. Afraid
  70. Ring
  71. Secrets
  72. Perseverance
  73. Neighbor
  74. Climb
  75. Star
  76. Healthy
  77. Laughter
  78. Forgiveness
  79. Experiment
  80. Admire
  81. Cliches
  82. Relax
  83. Marketing
  84. Home
  85. Time
  86. Rainbow
  87. Chaos
  88. Pancakes
  89. Travel
  90. Missing
  91. Jealousy
  92. Discovery
  93. Empathy
  94. Respect
  95. Energy
  96. Water
  97. Fight
  98. Art
  99. Sacrifice
  100. Growth

I hope you enjoyed these one word topics and prompts (AKA one-word journal prompts)

Now, let’s explore…

Writing Prompts: Why Use Them?

People of all ages who write creatively and keep journals use writing prompts as fuel to get their creative juices flowing.

Writing prompts are unique, fun, or inspiring words, thoughts, or pictures that help writers formulate ideas. They can be in the form of a single word, a sentence, or a paragraph—or even a photo or piece of art that inspires new and engaging thoughts to write about. Best of all, writing prompts can be found anywhere: the dictionary, TV ads, newspapers, magazines, photos, or on the Internet.

As we explored in the one word prompts listed above, a single word has the power to spark new ideas for a student to explore in writing. And you never know what may result from that one single word—perhaps a few paragraphs, a short story, or even an entire novel!

The word “star” is a wonderful example of an effective one word prompt because it can be interpreted in so many different ways.

For instance, one writer may choose to explore what it means to wish upon a star and have that wish come true instantly. Another writer may be inspired to write about stardust streaking across the cosmos at stellar light speed. And yet another writer may choose to write about movie stars or music stars and imagine what it would be like to be one. The writing ideas that can be generated from a single word are truly endless.

Purposes of Writing Prompts

The first purpose of writing prompts is that they give the writer an idea to expound upon. Some writers, when given a blank page, are at a loss as to what to write. Their minds may go blank and they may even experience writer’s block. With a one word prompt or a fresh story starter, the writer’s creative mind engages and their creative wheels begin to spin.

Another fabulous purpose for writing prompts is that a writer may create some really great material. Imagine an idea that started with a word or a phrase but in the end becomes a masterpiece. This is entirely possible! With good writing prompts, a writer’s mind flows with ideas, and many people find it amazing how much inspiration writing prompts produce.

A third purpose to writing prompts is that they support the habit of exploring new ideas in one’s writing. This exploration of new thoughts and ideas becomes a sort of exercise for the mind. It flexes your writing muscles, strengthens your imagination, and develops your writing skills.

Many writing groups, creative writing classes, and English teachers use writing prompts as a means to motivate and inspire students—and to expose them to new ideas that they may never have thought of if left to their own devices. And of course, many websites (including ours!) exist to share writing prompt lists and boost creativity through this wonderful medium. We suggest you explore them…we think you’ll be glad you did!

Until next time, write on…

If you enjoyed these One Word Prompts for Writers of All Ages,
please share them on Facebook, Twitter, and/or Pinterest.
I appreciate it!

creator and curator

One Word Prompts for Writing

PS – check out this fun Time Travel Prompt post and these word art journal prompts.

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