Monday, March 30, 2015

Free List of Prompts For Writers

There is always something to write about so why would anyone want a list of writing prompts? (You might be asking.) Prompts help us reach a little deeper - or maybe not as deep as usual, which can also be a good exercise if you reach deep most of the time. In other words, they take our imaginations where we might not normally go. I used to teach yoga, and so each class was a great class - for me. I was teaching what I wanted to do. When I wanted to practice, I did what I thought I might teach in a class - also what I wanted to do. In order to get out of this rut, each week, I made myself do a yoga tape with a different teacher than myself, so that I would have to do someone else's class of poses. They were from the same universal list of poses, but my mind didn't reach for them, consciously or
subconsciously (neither for good reasons nor bad).

'Neither for good nor bad' is to say that some of us over-react to our own internal critic. We make ourselves do the chore poses - or in writing, the deeper stuff - every time. These are the internal coaches of the world. Even if you are not a coach type, and choose your favorite poses (insert running trails, bike rides, etc.) every time, it is possibly a rut, either way you are 'treating' yourself, compensating, or over- or under-doing. If writing prompts were yoga they would be like the weekend yoga retreat with a different instructor even though you teach yoga at home. It's good for you! It is the veggie smoothie to the relied upon PBandJ lunch. Here, I've written out a list for you to try. You don't have to answer all of them at length.  Some will probably just have quick, short answers; but, one at least will be a 'pose' you invest a little time into and improve your practice, so to speak.  If this list doesn't generate at least one writing session longer than 100 words, you need to try a different list.  There are many other prompt lists available online, too. Journaling/art journaling prompts are another great thing to try if you keep a journal or an art journal.

On my Youtube channel, I have an upcoming vlog about why I think these prompts encourage the writer to think about character motivations.  Subscribe to my channel for new videos and notifications:

35 Writing Prompts 

Encourage Thinking About Character Motivations 

  1. Think of a place you went to - once or many times - between the ages of 6 and 10. Why did you go there? Who were you with? 
  2. Do you have a favorite bag? What kind of bag is it? What do you use it for? 
  3. Did you like ice cream as a kid? Do you like it now? Has your favorite flavor changed? 
  4. Do you truly believe in unicorns? Why or why not? 
  5. Do you drink coffee? Did you drink any today? Who were you with/what were you doing? 
  6. Have you ever had a map on your wall? Why? 
  7. Do you, or does anyone you know burn incense? Think of the smell and the hour of day you would experience the incense. What does it make you think about? 
  8. Have you ever baked a pie? If not, who do you know who has baked a pie? 
  9. Which holiday is your favorite for going out in public? Do you go with family or friends? 
  10. Which holiday do you like to spend at home with family, and is it your favorite, least favorite, or neutral? 
  11. What is the best pet name you have ever given to a pet, or a friend's pet? 
  12. Look around your walls at the art you own. Is it mostly color or black and white? If color is there a predominate color scheme, or is it all over the place? Why do you think you choose these colors or monochromatic? 
  13. How many DVDs do you own? Are they Blu-ray or regular? What does this say about you, if anything? 
  14. What is in the bottom left drawer of your refrigerator? Do you like it? 
  15. When was the last time you had to be told more than once not to do something that bothered someone else? Why did you continue in order to be told again? 
  16. Do you grow a garden? Each year? Do you grow organically? 
  17. Do you buy organics at the super-market? What do these answers say about you, if anything? 
  18. What would you wear to the funeral of a co-worker who specifically asked you to wear bright pink to his funeral if he should die while you worked there? Why? 
  19. Do you pack a lunch or do you usually buy it/go out? 
  20. Have you ever dyed or painted Easter eggs? 
  21. When you go to breakfast, do you order eggs? If so, are they fried, scrambled, Benedicted, or in an omlette? If you are at home cooking for yourself, how do you fix your eggs? Is there a difference? Why? 
  22. If a child is crying and a parent appears to be angry, even cruel, do you say something, or get involved in any way? It can be a child you know, or a stranger in a public place. 
  23. Have you ever been to a Humane Society or shelter for animals? Did you adopt a pet? 
  24. Have you ever been to a clothing optional beach or place? What did you do and why? 
  25. How many animals/creatures can you list that have become endangered during your lifespan so far? How old are you? 
  26. What is your favorite Rolling Stones song? 
  27. Do you remember how old you were when you first heard of The Rolling Stones? Or, are you wondering, who are The Rolling Stones? 
  28. If you are following a recipe, do you follow it exactly or do you 'spice it up'? Why? And, do people like your cooking? 
  29. Have you ever cross-dressed? If no, think about it for a minute, who would you emulate or how would you dress for one, secret occassion? For one public occassion? How do you imagine these experiences would occur?  Would they be thrilling or uncomfortable or somewhere in between? 
  30. If you were asked to ride in the Space Shuttle - free of charge - would you do it? Why or why not? How do you imagine this experience to go for you and one or two other passengers? 
  31. Do you make lists? Everyday, once a month, or only when over-whelmed? Do you stick to them? Do you think the concept works as it is supposed to? 
  32. What is your favorite kind of car? Do you know anyone who drives one? If not, what do you imagine that person to be like? 
  33. Do you know how to ride a bike? Do you think everyone does? Is this a silly question? 
  34. Where have you traveled that was most different from where you live now? What were at least two differences that stuck in your mind? 
  35. Do you think our oceans are in better condition that they were 10 years ago, or worse condition? What do you think the peoples of the world should do about it, or do you prefer not to think about the condition of the oceans? If you prefer not to, why?

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