College Creative Writing Word Associations
1. Three Categories Prompt
Choose one from each of the following categories and include them all in one short story. Object: A broken lamp, a cheerleader uniform, a dead sunflower, a 50-year-old newspaper clipping, a length of wet rope. Place: A funeral parlor, inside the president's bathroom, a campus art studio, a bar at closing time, a half-empty apartment. Person: A retired porn star, a mother of ten children, a man who was fired three hours ago, a cartoonist with Parkinson's disease, the man who writes the fine print on TV ads.
2. Multiple Word Prompt
Write a story using all of the following words: "squeal, feckless, scorched, unkempt, desire, adrift, hickory."
3. One Word Choice
Choose one of the following words as the basis for a short story: "harmony, disfigurement, squalid, segregate, frame, remember, load."
4. Free Write Choice
Free write for ten minutes based on the word "sense."
5. Book Prompt
Take a book off your shelf at random. Turn to page 23 and write down the first sentence you see. That's your starting line. Now turn to page 57 and write down the first sentence you see. That's your ending line. Go.
6. People Watch
Go to a coffee shop, library, park or party. Bring a notebook. Sit and listen to the conversations. Write down the interesting ones. Use them to build a scene or characters. Try to capture the way different people use language.
Download this page of writing prompts — free!
The DOC version is formatted and ready to use with Microsoft Word, Google Docs, or any other word processor that can open the .DOC file format. The PDF version can be viewed and printed on any computer with a PDF reader.
Index of Writing Prompts