Prompting prompts

Over the holidays, two lovely writers posted a series of writing prompts on their blogs to celebrate the Twelve Days of Christmas.  You can see a few of them here and here.

I have to admit, I was sorely tempted to write for each writing prompt.  Reading each one inspired a story that urged me to write it, but I just didn’t have the time.  Maybe I’ll dig up their prompts later and write a few short stories.  Come to think of it, that might be a good idea for the next holiday season…


When I first started writing, I thought writing prompts were a bit hokey.  I mean, as a writer, if you can’t come up with your own idea for a story…well, you’re not much of a storyteller, are ya?

But then I realized how silly that was.  Ideas are infinite and finite, limitless and limited, new and ancient.  The standard writing advice regarding what I writer should write about goes something like this:

A story is about struggle.

That’s it.  You may think you are writing a love story with zombies and werewolves, an adventure story with a scientist and his/her trusty sidekick, or a literary piece set in the Midwest, but in the end you are writing about the struggle your protagonist(s) endures.

Writing prompts just set the stage.  You, the writer, must push your characters through their struggle and do so in an entertaining way.  Once I figured that out, writing from prompts become fun.  The best part is reading how other writers interpret and execute on the same prompt.

Here are a few sites offering writing prompts.

Enjoy and Happy Writing!

10 thoughts on “Prompting prompts

  1. ” A story is about struggle…” It’s also about triumph and the everyday celebration of life, love and the people that stirs our world. Prompts are are great way to help us create something when we feel that our inspiration juice has dried up. I’ve been a part of Weekly photo Challenge and it’s a good motivator and source of ideas. And yes, we need to always keep in mind that our post should entertain , trigger a response and emotion, to make a difference to someone. Inspiring post! Have a great weekend.

    1. Ah, yes, you’re right. At the heart of every story is a struggle, but if our protagonists do not over come that struggle, it’s just depressing. Triumph over struggle! That’s what a story is. Thank you!

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