EDIT: As often happens on the internet, some of these sites or posts no longer work. I've removed the links but left the titles in place to make this post easier to read.
Sometimes the writing flows. Sometimes it needs a kickstart. For that, I love writing prompts. I have folders and files of them all over my computer, and I never get tired of finding more. They're a great way to get your daily writing practice going when you can't quite figure out what to write.
Here are ten of my favorites (plus two bonuses) in no particular order:
- Dragon Writing Prompts. It seems to have stopped updating, but there are loads of good prompts over there.
The One-Minute Writer.Prompts on a time limit (although you can always take them off the site and write more if things are getting good).
- Creative Writing Prompts. A strange looking page full of numbers, but there are good prompts hiding in there. Hover over each number to see the prompt.
- Awesome Writing Prompts. AKA Prompts that Don't Suck. A whole Tumblr full of fun and quirky prompts to play with.
- Writer's Digest Prompts. Great story starting prompts here. Make sure to check the older posts because they've been doing this for years, so there's a lot to see.
- Language is a Virus. This is a prompt generator. When you land on the page, there's a prompt showing. If you don't like it, you can click the red button and get something new. But don't cheat and keep clicking! Only give yourself one or two do-overs before you start to write.
- Toasted Cheese. This is one of my favorite sites. They have a variety of writing prompts and a weekly writing chat. Plus, I love the sandwich they're named after.
StoryWonk Story Generator. StoryWonk is my favorite writing site (so many awesome podcasts!). And this generator is fantastic with its crazy mishmash of characters and settings and events. It's great fun! And if you're interested in trying new processes in your writing life, check out the StoryWonk Frog Box. It's all about things to try (writing in a closet, for example) to shake the dust off your writing life.
- DIY MFA Writer Igniter. This is another fun story generator to play with, and it gives you a photo for the setting to really help get your writing started.
- The Writer prompts. Pages of scenarios to get your stories started.
And those bonuses I mentioned:
These are very short daily prompts that are sent to your email, and they are some of the best prompts I've seen:
Sarah Selecky Daily Prompts
This is a website that gives you a daily prompt and a place to do your writing practice (you can have them emailed to you, too, to make it really easy to get going): Daily Page
This should be plenty to get you writing and keep you going. Grab a prompt and go write something!