And the Situations When You Should Use Them! Whether you’re a published author or someone who prefers to keep your writing in the privacy of your own journal, you can benefit from flexing your creative muscles with some good old-fashioned writing prompts from time to time.
Some people might see writing prompts as a beginner’s tool but trust us—even your favorite famous authors use creative exercises like these to unblock themselves or sometimes simply to find a new perspective.
Ideas and inspiration can spring forth from anywhere if you open yourself to the possibility of finding them, and writing prompts are an easy way to tap into that potential.
5 Highly Helpful Times to Use Writing Prompts
Consider these five times when you may want to try a writing prompt to improve your writing process!
1. When You’re Suffering from Writer’s Block
Anyone who writes regularly will tell you that writer’s block is the worst. There’s nothing quite like the frustration of having something to say and feeling like you can’t find the words to say it.
When you’re feeling blocked and unable to write what you want to write, try putting everything away for a while and focus instead on a fresh writing prompt. Sometimes, the path a prompt provides is all you need to begin—and the lack of pressure to achieve a particular outcome can make it easier to continue.
2. When You Want to Warm Up Before Writing
Of course, a guided prompt can still be beneficial even if you aren’t experiencing writer’s block! In fact, many writers begin their sessions with a brief prompt simply to get the creative juices flowing and to stretch those writing muscles out.
Think of a pre-session writing prompt as a little workout for your imagination, and you’ll be amped up to get in some more productive work when you’ve finished your prompt!
3. When You’re Looking for a Way to Get to Know Yourself Better
Writing prompts are a great way to exercise your creativity, but they aren’t just a functional tool. In fact, they are also one of the best ways to dive deep into yourself and to become more aware of your own thoughts and behaviors!
Whether you’re interested in reflecting on your memories or you’re looking for a guide to use as a part of writing therapy, writing prompts are a helpful way to get to know yourself and to explore the aspects of yourself that make you who you are.
4. When You’re Looking for a Meditative Practice
Similarly, some people also use daily writing time as a sort of spiritual practice. The act of self-reflection, especially when it is done consistently, can actually be quite meditative and relaxing.
If you’re interested in using writing prompts as a therapeutic tool, try setting yourself up in a calm environment before you begin writing. Create a ritual around your writing time (such as lighting a candle or pouring a mug of your favorite tea) in order to develop the association in your mind that this is your quiet, meditative, writing time.
5. When You Need to Write Something New
Finally, writing prompts are also a great tool to use if you simply feel like your writing has been stuck in a rut. If you feel like your work has been stale or routine lately, a writing prompt is an effective way to try something new without having to tackle a whole new project.
For best results, look for writing prompts that ask you to consider something from a new perspective—or that ask you to use a particular type of form or language in your writing. Sometimes, trying something different is all you need to freshen up your creativity and breathe some new life into your regular work.
32 Writing Prompts All Writers Can Use and Appreciate
Looking for a fresh way to approach a story you’re working on—or perhaps a way to connect with yourself a little better? These 32 new writing prompts for all writers are a great way to explore new ideas and see where your pen takes you!
- Write about the person who loves you more than anyone else in the world.
- What is the first thing most people tend to notice about you? How does this make you feel?
- If you could change any one thing about your life, what would it be? What ramifications would this change have?
- Do you have a positive relationship with one or both of your parents? Why or why not?
- What would you do if you received a life-changing amount of money? What amount would it need to be—and where is the first place you would spend some of it?
- When you woke up this morning, how did you feel? How did that feeling change throughout the day?
- Do you believe people deserve second chances? Why or why not?
- What is your earliest distinct memory? Why do you think that memory is significant to you?
- When you look at your life, which year was the best? Why?
- Do you think it’s ever okay to tell a lie? What about a white lie? Why or why not?
- After a hard day, would you rather be alone or go out with a close friend? Why?
- What are you excited about right now?
- Write about a time when no matter how hard you tried, you couldn’t seem to stop laughing.
- If you could be anyone else in the world, who would you be? Why?
- Do you have a healthy relationship with technology? Why or why not?
- Describe your perfect day from start to finish, using as much detail as possible.
- Do you consider yourself more of an optimist or a pessimist? How does this affect your daily life?
- What is the healthiest thing you do for yourself each day?
- What is one bad habit that you plan to keep forever?
- Write about a time when you were really in trouble. What did you do to get out of the situation?
- Think about one major way that you’ve changed in the last several years. Then, imagine what your life would be like if you hadn’t changed that aspect of yourself.
- Do you think the perks of being a celebrity would be worth dealing with the lack of privacy? Why or why not?
- Write about your most embarrassing moment. Does it still make you cringe or does it make you laugh?
- What would you like more people to realize about you? Why?
- What do you struggle with the most? Why is it a challenge for you?
- If you could go on a dream vacation anywhere in the world, where would you go? Describe your ideal trip.
- Write the story of how you met your very first best friend. What drew the two of you together?
- Write about an aspect of your life today that you hope will always stay the same.
- Are you a procrastinator or someone who always does things ahead of schedule? How does this affect your life?
- Do you like surprises? Why or why not?
- Write about a time when things worked out much differently than you expected.
- What is your greatest wish for yourself?
Related Links & Resources
- Creative Writing Exercises
- 68 Daily Writing Prompts for Everyone
- 11 Creative Fun Writing Prompts for Writers
Until next time, write on…
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