I’ve chattered previously about my craft exercises. It occurs to me that since I have a lot of followers who are also writers, that maybe you guys would find some of these helpful as well, so feel free to use them if you need a little kick-start to get the fingers warmed up in morning 🙂
I personally like to set time limits on them because if a clock is ticking I’m less likely to agonize and second guess myself, but feel free to ignore that part if it throws off your groove.
Five Minute Prompts
- Write about someone being afraid of a common thing
- Write about someone being unafraid of a scary thing
- Write the most flowery, rich sentence you possibly can. (This helps me just to get it out of my system so I don’t throw too many adjectives in my stories.)
- List words and phrases that indicate that romance is on the way
Ten Minute Prompts
- Dialog with a sleep-talker
- Write an action-filled scene using only dialog (This was haaard for me! But ultimately pretty fun.)
- Write only the first and last paragraph of a story. (I actually stole this prompt from my college writing teacher, Elizabeth Poliner. It’s kind of nice to play around with beginnings and endings without worrying about an actual plot.)
- Description of a place through a blind person’s POV
Fifteen Minute Prompts
- A villain reflecting on something they love
- A fight scene where the main character is unfamiliar with the only weapon available.
- Dialog – 2 people trying to communicate with no common language
- Dialog – an argument where only one party realizes they are fighting.
Twenty Minute Prompts
- Open a book randomly, write a story beginning with the first complete sentence on the page
- Rewrite the same conversation in all four seasons (5 minutes per season)
- Dialog – 3 distinct voices, no tags allowed. (Yeah, I know you can’t play the ‘no tags’ card too often in the real world, but the exercise really helps me hone in on what makes a pattern of speech distinctive.)
- Description of the same weather by two different people.
So, yeah! Have at it. 🙂 Drop me a comment if the prompt doesn’t make sense, or if you found a cool way to alter it to make it more challenging. Also, I can totally post more of these if people find them helpful, so let me know if this is something you’d like to see again.