So you want to become a better creative writer? But you feel short of ideas, lacking in inspiration, and just don't know where to start your next piece of writing. You know deep down that you have a lot of potential as a writer, you enjoy writing and have written pieces in the past that you've been proud of.
But lately, the words are just not coming. What can you do?
Creative writing prompts are one of the best ways to get your creative juices flowing and unlock all that untapped potential.
A writing prompt is simply a word, phrase, picture or idea to stimulate your creativity and start you writing. Where you go with your writing after that is entirely up to you, the prompt just gives you that little push, that glimmer of inspiration you've had difficulty finding lately.
Many writers feel that using a writing prompt might be cheating or taking a short cut, and means you're not producing work that's all yours. Remember, the prompt is just a starting point. YOUR unique creativity does the rest.
Think of using writing prompts like this:
Imagine there's a huge wonderful garden, every last square inch heaving with the most gorgeous and bountiful blooms. There are many different areas within that garden, each with their own theme and design.
For example, there's the Victorian English garden, the dense tropical Amazonian rainforests, the Dutch tulip fields of every colour imaginable, and the sweeping majesty of the undiscovered Alaska. If you looked hard enough, you'd probably even find the hanging gardens of Babylon!
It's a big garden! Infinitely big in fact.
All around this glorious garden is a 20 foot high brick wall, with a gate every few metres or so. You can just about see enough through the gates to know there's plenty to be explored inside, but they're all locked and there seems no way of opening them.
Then, you realise, just beside each gate is a little red box. You open the box and inside is a key. The key for the gate, the key to entering this incredible garden. You take the key, open the gate, and you're in, off on your adventure...
So, how does this relate to writing prompts and being afraid to use them because they're not all your own, or because you feel you're cheating?
A creative writing prompt is the key to the garden. It's not the actual garden.
The garden is already within you. It's all the amazing, rich and emotive stories, poems, songs and novels you haven't yet written but are perfectly capable of writing. Use a creative writing prompt, take the key that's been offered, and start to explore that wonderful creative garden within you... You, and your future audience, deserve to experience that garden in its fullest bloom...