creative writing prompts

25 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.

Luckily, I have several books and other writing resources that are packed with writing exercises and creative writing prompts. Sometimes, all it takes are a few words to get me started, and then I’m off, writing into the sunset.

Creative Writing Prompts




Today I’d like to share a mash-up of 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.

  1. You’re digging in the garden and find a fist-sized nugget of gold. There’s more where that came from in this hilarious story of sudden wealth.
  2. Write about something ugly — war, fear, hate, or cruelty–but find the beauty (silver lining) in it or something good that comes out of it.
  3. 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.
  4. A kid comes out of the school bathroom with toilet paper dangling from his or her waistband.
  5. Revisit your earliest memories of learning about faith, religion, or spirituality.
  6. Use all of the following words in a piece of writing: bit, draw, flex, perilous, bubble, corner, rancid, pound, high, open.
  7. Write a poem about a first romantic (dare I say: sexual) experience or encounter.
  8. He turned the key in the lock and opened the door. To his horror, he saw…
  9. Silvery flakes drifted downward, glittering in the bright light of the harvest moon. The blackbird soared.
  10. 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.
  11. 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.
  12. Three children are sitting on a log near a stream. One of them looks up at the sky and says…
  13. There is a magic talisman that allows its keeper to read minds. It falls into the hands of a young politician…
  14. We’ve seen cute and cuddly dragons, mean and vicious dragons, and noble dragons. Write a story about a different kind of dragon.
  15. Use all of the following words in a piece of writing: dash, hard, staple, billboard, part, circle, flattened.
  16. A doctor puts his hand on his patient’s arm and says, “You or the baby will survive. Not both. I’m sorry.”
  17. Write about when you did something bad and got away with it.
  18. 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?
  19. You walk into your house and it’s completely different — furniture, decor, all changed. It doesn’t look like the same house anymore. And nobody’s home.
  20. 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.
  21. A twinkling eye can mean many things. Write a poem about a twinkle in someone’s eye.
  22. What determines an action or person as good or evil? Who gets to decide what or who is good or evil?
  23. Write about your body.
  24. Have you ever been just about to drift off to sleep only to be roused by a spontaneous memory of an embarrassing moment from your past?
  25. Use all of the following words in a piece of writing: feast, fire, modify, squash, robbed, forgotten, under-stated.

Now It’s Your Turn

If none of these creative writing prompts inspired you, don’t despair. Come up with some prompts of your own, and then share them in the comments.

Keep writing!

Creative Writing Prompts

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