Fiction Writing Prompts: Ideas for Creativity

Getting handed the assignment of writing according to fiction writing prompts may seem limiting and confining at first. If you are used to writing according to whatever whim or mood strikes your fancy, being confined to one idea can feel like a noose around your neck. Fiction writing prompts are designed to help writers find a great idea to write about rather than put a stranglehold on them, yet all too often they provide the adverse effect rather than the positive result they were meant to provide.

If you are handed fiction writing prompts, however, you do have some creative options to consider for finding your own unique voice and turning out a fresh piece unlike any other. First and foremost, take that prompt and brainstorm any ideas that come to mind. Try not to focus too much on trying to develop a plot in your mind, but instead just do some word association and brainstorming to see where your thoughts will carry you. Sometimes the first idea that comes to mind is a truly generic idea while other times your first idea may be completely off-the-wall and unique. This preliminary exercise can help you to determine which path you really want to travel down with your assignment.

After brainstorming, take a look at what you have written down and try to delve deeper into developing a plot with complex characters and fun twists. See if you can find creative ways to carry your readers on a journey that may be unexpected, heartfelt, surprising, adventurous, emotional, or on some other attention-grabbing journey. Spending a few minutes to really develop your plot before you start writing can make the difference between a good story and an amazing story.

Another fun thing to do with fiction writing prompts is to go back to your brainstorming and word association list and try to find some fun words and phrases you have listed. These can be a great resource for you to use in your writing as you build on imagery, personification, and other creative elements to develop your story and really create a journey for your reader. These are words, phrases and ideas that blend in and expand upon the theme and plot you have chosen, and that also move far beyond general concepts like “big” and “smelly.” Instead, you should truly describe the experience for the reader in a way that uses words and phrases related to the theme.

While some people do enjoy writing with fiction writing prompts, others may find them restrictive at first. However, when you think of them as a mere starting point for your creativity and understand that you truly can move anywhere from that starting point to wherever your mind takes you, you will find that you have the freedom to really let loose within that prompt to expand to places and go on journeys that only your mind can create. Take some time to implement these strategies in your next writing assignment, and you will find that you can create amazing stories that are unique and completely fun to write!


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