Here is the list of prompts I’m giving to the high school creative writing club members. (For those who only know me from WP, I teach HS English.) It’s slightly modified from someone I do not know but whom I credit at the top. Each weekday throughout October, the goal is to get a little writing exercise, or “Writercise!” (I just made that up) in preparation for National Novel Writing Month. Please note: I made up the ultra-cheesy “poems” after each week because I’m that guy.
Feel free to modify/borrow, etc., friends!
NaNoWriMo Warm-Ups – OCTOBER 2015
The following have been adapted from Catherine Reid (Warren Wilson College)
These short writing exercises/prompts are meant to loosen up your imagination and flex your writing muscles. With each one, the goal is to produce a fresh, clear passage that uses specific language, precise nouns and verbs. The writer should, as always, strive to avoid including cliches and vague terms.
The prompts are your work. You are encouraged to mix genres (fiction or non-fiction, poetry, essays, etc.) throughout the month. Go with what inspires you!
|Date||Prompt||I did it!|
|10/5||Any “first” – (locker, kiss, driving, lie, roller coaster, etc.)|
|10/6||Memorable moment and how it felt, but do not name the feeling; express how it felt in your body (damp hands, metallic taste, etc.)|
|10/7||whole story using only monosyllabic words|
|10/8||signficant place from two POVs; rooftop and turtle’s eyes|
|10/9||Explain how to get from your house to a secret/magical place only you know|
|WEEK ONE IS DONE!
IF YOU WROTE AT LEAST 3 OF THESE,
YOU DESERVE A WARM GRILLED CHEESE!
|10/12||significant person–include as many physical details as possible|
|10/13||Your name–why you were given it/stories attached to it/meaning; what would you re-name yourself?|
|10/14||describe a presence in your house (person, pet, furniture, illness, secret, etc.) use all five senses|
|10/15||recall a memorable photo; tell what happened before/after;|
|10/16||research Pulitzer Prize-winning photographs and create a story about one photograph|
|WEEK TWO IS THROUGH!
IF YOU COMPLETED 4 OR MORE,
GET YOURSELF A DELICIOUS S’MORE!
|10/19||tell a story (F/NF) from the POV of a close relative|
|10/20||describe a daily routine or holiday ritual using PRESENT TENSE only|
|10/21||witness a crime/moral dilemma (theft/hit-and-run, etc) and explain what you would do/why|
|10/22||another routine/holiday ritual written in SECOND PERSON POV|
|10/23||26-sentence short story; each new sentence begins with a different letter of the alphabet (in order/scrambled)|
WEEK THREE IS COMPLETE!
IT’S TIME, PERCHANCE, TO HAVE A HEALTHY TREAT!
|10/26||a still-life that implies a dramatic moment (overturned chair, several balled up papers, torn envelope, single key, etc.)|
|10/27||make up a story based on a recent crime from a newspaper Police Beat or Classified Ad|
|10/28||describe the room of: a HS about to drop out/cashier who’s just won a lottery/aging movie star/a paranoid person|
|10/29||a how-to for something you know how to do well|
|10/30||monosyllabic list of nouns and verbs; make up a scene using at least ten of each|
|THE MONTH IS DONE; NOW IT’S TIME TO SPOOK!
TAKE TOMORROW OFF; PERHAPS START A NEW “BOO”K!