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Writing prompts for beginners

Updated: May 2, 2023

Writing prompts are great for when you are starting out as a writer or if you are a little bit stuck/ blocked. Writing prompts don't have to spark the great novel in you, sometimes they are good just to start exercising that writing muscle inside of you.



Today, I thought I'd start with some small writing prompts that can warm you up while writing, or perhaps they may even lead to something bigger... There are no rules to writing prompts, you can follow them as closely or as loosely as you want. If you start following it and then it leads you somewhere else, then just go with it.


What is a writing prompt?

Writing prompts are small ideas/ instructions that you can follow to create a piece of writing.

You may find some prompts that work well for you and others that you really don't get on with. The point of a prompt is to let you experiment with your writing and grow as a writer. If you want to experiment with a specific genre; for example Science Fiction, then using a prompt is a good place to start.


A Letter


Write a letter addressed to yourself at a specific time in your life.

Do you ever think back to a time in your life, a version of yourself where your present self could offer advice? What have you learnt since then that could help? This is great for bringing emotion into your writing and can give you multiple perspectives in your work.


An image


Find a picture, study the photo and create a story based on what you see.

Start by describing what you see, and then think about what kind of story could be set there, who lives there, where is it? This is a great way to work on your world building and can lead to many different places. What is great about this prompt is, if you are interested in working with different genres, you can choose an image accordingly.



Defamiliarisation


Describe someone you know in the form of an object.

This exercise is good for working on your descriptive writing and characterisation. If you're writing about someone you love, then this will come out in your writing. Perhaps you write them in the form a comfortable chair, or perhaps if you hate them you write them in the form of a scratchy blanket.



Favourite fictional character


Write from the perspective of one of your favourite fictional characters (or most hated).

It's kind of similar to writing fan fiction. This is a fun exercise that's great for getting your creative juices flowing. Writing about something you already know so well, in a world that has already been created can take the pressure of coming up with ideas. Imagine writing from the villain's perspective, you know what they say, everyone is the hero in their own story...


A conversation


Write out a conversation that you wish you had with someone in your life, perhaps a friend or someone who has passed away or maybe even someone you idolise.

This is a great prompt if you are wanting to work on writing dialogue. Through conversation you can create a story, by not only telling through dialogue but showing between how you and the other person are interacting too.


There are so many writing prompts out there, just one search engine away:













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