Friday, December 13th, 2013

Writing Prompt – A Little “Best Of”

dreamstimefree_251887-eI’ve been traveling.

Last week it was a convention and this past week it was out of state for a friend’s book launch.

Since I don’t know whether I’m coming or going, I figured we’d do a little “best of” the writing prompts this week.

In honor of Friday the 13th, you could revisit the Attack of the Phobias Writing Prompt.

Here’s one for poets: Structured Poetry, The Tanka

Here’s a writing prompt about collections: What do your characters collect?

Writing Prompt: Lost

For something unthemed, you might try the Random Words Writing Prompt.

Have Fun!

Friday, August 3rd, 2012

Writing Prompt – On the Road Again

Pacific Railroad Sign - Photo by Kelly A. HarmonNo sooner do I get back from Oregon than I have to start planning my next trip away.


Yeah, yeah, it’s great….but what should turn out to be a few relaxing weeks is turning into scads of laundry, tons of email catch-up, a frantic paying of bills and tossing out of all the science experiments taking place in the fridge.

Oh, and I’ll be eating lots of junk so that I don’t inadvertently start any more science experiments in the fridge.

Since I’ve got traveling on the mind again today…

Here’s Your Prompt:

  • Imagine you’ve been driving for hours. The open road is barren and desolate, you need gas, and you’re hungry. Up ahead you see a shifty, broken down diner, but you’ve got no choice but to go in. Lucky for you, they’ve got gas pumps, too. Oh, and they serve liquor. There’s a bunch of Harleys parked out front all in a row. When you enter the diner, everyone’s crowded at the bar, staring at something you can’t see. What happens?
  • On the road again –
    Just can’t wait to get on the road again…
    Goin’ places that I’ve never been.
    Seein’ things that I may never see again…
    ~ From “On the Road Again, Willie Nelson.
  • You’re on vacation, up early the next morning due to jet lag, and the weather announcer on TV says that it’s going to be windy and cold for the next week (you were expecting sunny and beautiful). Someone in your party shouts, “Road Trip!” Where do you go? What do you do? Write what happens.
  • Pick one:
    You’re driving

    • In a bad section of town…
    • In the “touristy” part of town…
    • In the part of the city where the rich people live…
    • On the open road in the middle of nowhere…
    • On a long stretch of unpaved road…

    … and one of these things happens:

    • You get a flat tire.
    • You run out of gas.
    • You see something extraordinary.
    • You’re robbed.
    • You hit an animal.

    Write the scene.


  • “…a number of people, shop people and so forth, attracted by the stories they had heard, were walking over the Horsell Bridge and along the road between the hedges that runs out…” ~ From The War of the Worlds, H.G. Wells, 1898.
  • If you journal, write about a trip you’d planned, but had to cancel. What happened? How did you feel? Or, write about a trip you’d like to make: Why do you want to go? What draws you to that place? What will you do when you get there?
  • “An elegant carriage stood in the middle of the road with a pair of spirited grey horses; there was no one in it, and the coachman had got off his box and stood by…” ~ From Crime and Punishment, Fyodor Dostoevsky, 1917.
  • You get home after your trip, drop the suitcase inside the door, collapse on the sofa and say, “Thank goodness I’m home!” What happened?

Good Luck!


If you enjoy these writing prompts, consider donating a cup of coffee or a donut!

Friday, July 27th, 2012

Writing Prompt – On Your Travels

Oregan Trail MarkerI’ve been traveling all around Oregon for the last two weeks, taking in the sites and experiencing things on the West Coast that this native East Coast Gal hasn’t experienced. I’m fascinated by how different the landscape is.

I’m really enjoying the coastal weather in Lincoln City where I spent most of my time at two workshops presented by author Dean Wesley Smith. It’s cool here by the sea, and I’ve spent my nights with the windows wide open, nary a mosquito in sight.

What I’m dreading is the trip home. (And if you saw my Writer’s Prompt post of two weeks ago, you’ll know why.)

But I’m dreading the trip back for other reasons: the load I bear.

I packed light. For a 17-day trip, I managed to pack in my carry-on and a (somewhat overly-large) purse. I did buy toiletries and other incidentals when I arrived, and did some creative laundry in the hotel about mid-way through. But I’ve managed to collect enough gee-gaws and doo-dads while I’m here, that I’m not sure how I’m going to manage to get it all home.

(Fossil huntil – and finding – will do that to you, as well as trips to the local book store and one interesting yard sale at the church across from the hotel.)

If I had to do it over, I would have packed even lighter.

Here’s Your Prompt:

  • Pretend you’re going on vacation for three weeks. Make a list of the items you’ll absolutely need, or won’t be able to live without, for three weeks. (It’s got to be a list of items that you can carry or haul yourself.) Now, cut that list in half.
  • Write a poem or short story using at least three items from the second list.
  • If you journal or write memoir, write your worst traveling experience EVER.
  • Have you ever taken public transportation? Think about a stranger you’ve seen or met on public transportation, and write a character sketch of this person. Make up the details you don’t know. Write a story about this person, but it can’t be a ‘traveling’ story.

Good luck!