When Words Won’t Come: The Case for Writing Prompts

Here’s the thing. We’re all busy. If we’re not busy, writers are very good at “appearing to be busy.” For instance, here’s how I’ve been productive:

  • Registered children for swimming
  • Laundry
  • More laundry
  • Trips to Costco and the grocery store
  • Hanging up pictures
  • Painting my daughter’s room pink (my husband and parents got roped into this project, too)
  • Cleaning out the home office
  • Getting rid of outgrown clothes
  • Removing expired food from the fridge and pantry

You get the picture. Did all of these things need to be done? Yes, eventually. But I used what should have been my writing time to do it.

Photo by Jill Burrow on Pexels.com

It’s summer, and I’m trying to be kind to myself. So rather than feel guilty about all the time I kind of sort of definitely wasted, I’m going to focus on finding a fun way to get myself unblocked: the humble writing prompt.

I used to belong to a writer’s group that focused entirely on writing prompts. Some of what I created ten minutes at a time made its way into publishable short stories, were fleshed out into their own works of fiction, or at the very least gave me permission to do something fun — with no major consequences — for a few minutes at a time.

By the way, I always give myself a time limit when working with a writing prompt, generally around 10 minutes. Here’s why: It forces me to choose my first or second thought and run with it. Enforcing a time limit ensures that I won’t be staring at a blinking cursor or blank piece of paper. It also helps me to see how valuable 10 minutes really is!

Want to give it a try? You can check out this writing prompt generator here.

Happy writing!

Published by Rebecca

I’m a writer and actor, and I love to use my creative abilities to help others tell their stories. I love getting lost in novels, spending time with my family, and nail polish.

2 thoughts on “When Words Won’t Come: The Case for Writing Prompts

  1. Haha, yeah. The only way I’ll ever get my chores done is to sit down and stare at a blank page. Anyway, writing prompts are awesome, and a random fiction writing prompt is one of the reasons why I actually completed a novel. Anyway, thanks for this post!

    Liked by 1 person

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