80 Writing Prompts to Get You Writing Again

Have you run out of ideas for stories to write? Whether fiction or nonfiction this list of prompts can get your pen flowing across the page.

Barbara King
Oct 23 · 6 min read
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Photo by Noah Silliman on Unsplash

Now months into quarantine you may be running out of things to do and your creativity may be at an all-time low.

Well now is the perfect time to get that creative mind back rolling into high gear!

Whether you just write for fun or you’re looking for an idea for your next big novel below is a list of prompts to get your pen streaming across the page. (Or fingers tapping at the keys.)

10 Writing Prompts for Thriller Writers

  • You get a text message from an unknown number saying, “Meet me outside. They’re coming.”
  • Your best friend tells you that she feels like someone’s been watching her. The next day she goes missing.
  • One day at work, you look across the street to see a hooded figure in a black coat.
  • Your fingers tense around the object in your pocket, ready to pull it out at a moment’s notice.
  • You wake up to discover a completely different, unknown face staring back at you from the mirror.
  • Your aunt passes away, leaving you her hundred-year-old home.
  • You can solve murders simply by stepping foot at the crime scene. People become suspicious.
  • She has been walking for hours. Her feet are bleeding, she can’t stop, she can’t let him find her again.
  • You are legally allowed to commit one murder, but you must fill out the proper paperwork and your victim will be told beforehand.
  • Awake while the world sleeps, unable to rest. What do you do in your spare time?

10 Writing Prompts For Romance Writers

  • A stranger texts the wrong number, and accidentally sends you a declaration of love.
  • An avalanche strands two enemies together.
  • The billionaire never looked her way until the day she made plans after work and decided to dress up a bit for a date with another man.
  • You fall through the pages of you’re favorite romance novel, do you let the characters fall in love with their destined love? Or make them fall for you instead?
  • You and your best friends decide to try a new dating app for the first time.
  • Every morning you see him on the bus. One day you decide to sit next to him.
  • Alone at a night club, you just came to dance, but he keeps catching your eye and you don’t want to look away.
  • Desperate for cash, a med student signs up to be a nude model.
  • Sent to serve the women her divorce papers you can’t help but stare at the beautiful women before you.
  • She’s married. He’s married, but they can’t keep their hands off each other.

10 Writing Prompts For Science Fiction Writers

  • You wake up one day with the ability to read minds.
  • Aliens have landed on Earth and have hacked every smartphone on the planet.
  • You and your best friend have a sleepover. She brings something to show you book of spells
  • An alien who has been living undercover on Earth can only maintain his human form for a limited amount of time each day before it reverts into his original form.
  • Water has become a scarce resource that is more valuable than gold.
  • Human beings begin to find themselves growing extra limbs as global warming amps up.
  • A scientist is devastated by the death of his child. He works to find a way to bring her back to life.
  • In the aftermath of a nuclear holocaust, women survivors determine that since men were responsible for the war, they should never have power again.
  • Scientists can scan a child and tell the parents how they will die in the future before they give birth to them.
  • While out walking, you step on a leaf and it says “Ouch!”

10 Writing Prompts For Fantasy Writers

  • A peasant girl believes that a figure in a vision told her to lead an army to victory.
  • A person has been turned into an object by magic.
  • You go down to the river to vent your problems, one day the river talks back.
  • Narnia-Style, you discover a hidden world while cleaning your closet or walking through a doorway.
  • Bitten by an animal, you start to gain their abilities.
  • You come into possession of a ring that can change the weather to whatever you decide.
  • A woman has been on many dates, but it never seems to work out. Unaware that she’s actually been dating the same guy a shapeshifter.
  • Your magical powers stop working when you’re drunk.
  • You can see 10 minutes into the future, how do you use your powers.
  • A ghost befriends a cop that helps him solve murders and missing-person cases.

10 Writing Prompts For Horror Writers

  • When you wake up on the first day of your cruise the boast is now empty.
  • It’s late at night, and you hear footsteps in the cellar.
  • Moments after taking off for a flight, the entire plane begins to shake dramatically.
  • A man commits crimes in his sleep. Every morning he wakes up covered in blood, but no idea where it’s from.
  • “I never want you to lay eyes on another man.” Then the world goes dark.
  • Animals take over the world.
  • One night, the dead wake up in their old beds unaware that they have died, resuming their lives as normal.
  • A brother and sister find an old door in their basement that wasn’t there before.
  • A monster is terrified by the scary child who lives above his bed.
  • A girl goes missing. Fifteen years later her parents get a call from her. But they were sure they killed her.

10 Writing Prompts For YA Writers

  • When a nerdy girl transfers to a new school, she changes her image.
  • Anonymous notes in her locker lead her into a mystery.
  • Teenage witch starts her journey at a new school but quickly discovers some of her classmates are vampires.
  • A girl on the swim team transforms into a part-time mermaid.
  • A high-schooler is told they have less than a year to live. They decide against having any more treatments against her family’s wishes to pursue their bucket list.
  • A teen gains the ability to take the form of any other person they choose.
  • A girl was forced to spend the summer with her grandparents. Becomes the best summer of her life.
  • You find out that your best friend’s dad is responsible for the missing people in your hometown.
  • Pregnant in her junior year of high school. Now what?
  • Bullied student finds support in an anonymous chat room, but who’s on the other end?

10 Non-Fiction Writing Prompts

  • Are Parents Violating Their Children’s Privacy When They Share Photos and Videos of Them Online?
  • What Are the Best Books You’ve Read?
  • Are There Books That Should Be Banned From Your School Library?
  • What Role Does Television Play in Your Life and the Life of Your Family?
  • What Purpose Does Writing Serve in Your Life?
  • Is It Possible to Separate Art From the Artist Who Created It?
  • Should Society Support Artists and Others who Pursue Creative Works?
  • Have Curse Words Become So Common They Have Lost Their Shock Value?
  • Should Home-Schoolers Be Allowed to Play Public School Sports?
  • Should Schools Put Tracking Devices in Students’ ID Cards?

10 Writing Prompts For Self Reflection

  • Write about your biggest fear.
  • What is your biggest goal in life?
  • Write a letter to your younger self.
  • Why do you like to write?
  • When was a time you failed, but refused to give up? Did you eventually succeed?
  • Where do you see yourself in five years? Ten years?
  • If you could ask one question of one person and they couldn’t lie who/what would you ask?
  • What would you change about yourself if you could?
  • If you could give your child one piece of advice they listen to, what would it be?
  • What would you say to a loved one who has passed away?

Best of luck!

Happy writing!

B. King

The Brave Writer

The next generation of writers breaking barriers together.

By The Brave Writer

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Barbara King

Written by

24 year old college student with many passions including writing, reading, and putting her cat in cute outfits.

The Brave Writer

The next generation of writers breaking barriers together.

Barbara King

Written by

24 year old college student with many passions including writing, reading, and putting her cat in cute outfits.

The Brave Writer

The next generation of writers breaking barriers together.

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