1. Warm Up: Stream of Consciousness
It’s the beginning of March (and Autumn) as I think about this next bunch of creative prompts. And phrases such as ‘time is marching on’ and ‘marching to a different beat’ come to mind in a stream of consciousness kind of way. All cliches of course, but sometimes you need to jot down the well-worn sayings before you get to something fresh and original.
So, for this first prompt, write down the word March and/or Autumn (or Spring if you’re in the Northern hemisphere).
Next, set your timer for 5 minutes (even if you’re super busy you can find five minutes).
Now, write down the first word, phrase of sentence that comes to mind. Then the next, and the next, until time is up.
Or just keep going until you feel that what you’re writing is no longer the ‘obvious’ connection.
2. Random Words
3. Line from a Poem
‘A cold coming we had of it, just the worst time of the year for a journey’.
This is the opening line from T.S. Elliot’s ‘The Journey of the Magi’, but it sounds like a great first line of a story to me.
Write the story that emerges, which doesn’t have to relate in anyway to the original poem .
Alternatively, represent this (or the entire poem) in any art form you wish.
Choose one or more of the following images as a prompt for your writing.
5. Cafe Conversations
Being a writer is a perfect excuse to eavesdrop. Consider it research on how dialogue works.
I also believe that anyone who speaks loud enough in a cafe, whether that be to another person or (even worse) into their phone is just asking to have a writer take note of the conversation.
So, choose your favourite cafe, or somewhere totally new.
Simply note down what you hear, whether that be the general noises that contribute to the cafe’s atmosphere, or specific conversations.
6. What’s in the Pram?
Imagine that you see a man or a woman pushing a pram down the street. You lean in to say hello to the baby, only to discover there is no baby.
What is in the pram? And what happens next?
7. Favourite Relatives
Over to You
Which creative prompt will you start with?
Remember: you can’t edit a blank page, but you can edit a crappy first draft.