Why Prompts?

I love writing prompts. They stir the imagination, stimulate the mind, and encourage new and crazy things. You could make a novel out of a writing prompt if you wanted to. (Kara Swanson wrote her novella The Girl Who Could See based on a writing prompt.) I use prompts for short stories, but that’s because my mind creates ideas for novels all on its own; short stories are what tend to give me trouble. It’s all too easy for me to make those ideas long enough to span a whole book.

So, how did Prompted start? Well, my friend Laura was having trouble figuring out what to write after she finished her novel during NaNoWriMo. I had recently realized the potential of writing prompts in stimulating creativity, so I suggested that every week, we would both try to use the same writing prompt to write our own story.

Trying to do this every week turned out to be a bit ambitious. Still, most weeks, one of us chose a prompt, and then we both wrote a story based on the prompt. After finishing, we sent our attempts to each other to discover we always took the prompts in drastically different directions.

Finishing short, experimental works was invigorating. The stories didn’t need to be fantastic; their purpose was to help me try new things, grow as a writer, and have fun. But as I accumulated more and more stories, I remembered that my writing mentor, Kara Swanson (mentioned earlier), suggested starting a blog for short stories. Thus, Prompted was born!

You’ll often see me link to Laura’s blog on my posts. At times, she and I will both post a piece inspired by the same prompt, so I’ll post a link to hers at the end of mine. If you’re a writer and have never used a writing prompt before, I would highly recommend it. Just try it and see where it leads you!

If you want to see a place with already-gathered prompts, check out my Writing Prompts Pinterest board. That should help spark your creativity.

So, what are you waiting for? Go check out a Prompted story!