It’s not always easy to seek out inspiration when it’s lacking. This could be even more of an issue for those sheltering in place, when the world is telling you that you have every reason not to write that novel that’s been lurking in the back of your brain for years or that screenplay you’ve never had time to write.
Sometimes when imagining the creation process, we can put too much emphasis on all the right elements coming together in order for us to be struck by an idea for a story, play, essay, or blog post. However, writing is a muscle, and like other muscles, it must be exercised every day.
Using prompts for inspiration
Let’s say you block out time to write every day, but ideas aren’t coming to you as quickly as you’d like them to. One way to get your creative juices flowing is to start with prompts. These can inspire both fiction and non-fiction, or even simply be used for journaling and reflection. Even if your subject matter veers from where it started, writing prompts can get you in the mindset to think in a way you wouldn’t usually think, or write about something you wouldn’t usually write about.
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 that will keep you engaged:
20 fun writing prompts
1 Write about a song and a feeling it invoked in you.
2 Recall an important memory from your childhood and tell it from the perspective of someone else who was present.
3 Write about an item you have that isn’t expensive but means a lot to you.
4 What color do you feel like today and why?
5 Describe your favorite room in your home or apartment.
6 What is the most adventurous thing you’ve eaten?
7 Write a review of the last movie you saw.
8 Write about an imagined ideal day walking around a city of your choosing.
9 If you could live inside one of your favorite stories, what would you change about it?
10 Write about why you want to write.
11 Write about something nice a stranger did for you.
12 Describe your favorite piece of furniture in your childhood home.
13 What was the last piece of media you read, heard, or saw that inspired you?
14 What is a dream you’ve had that you want to live in forever?
15 Write about what you think the world will look like in 10 years.
16 Describe what you imagine to be happening in a historical photograph.
17 Write about a time you witnessed community solidarity.
18 Read the last postcard, letter, or personal email you received, and start a story with the first sentence.
19 Who is the most interesting person you can think of? Create a list of questions you would ask them in an interview.
20 Recall an object you found on the sidewalk/side of the road. Why did someone give it away? Why did they have it to begin with?