Writing Prompt: Inspiration and Influence

Finding your own voice when you’re writing can be difficult. I’ve noticed that when I’ve been reading a great deal, I tend to follow the tone of voice and style of whomever I’m reading. For a few weeks I was writing in the style of Jane Austen and realised the narrative was too formal for the story and not at all the way I would usually tell a story. The same thing happened when I read too much science fiction and fantasy. Reading is an excellent way of getting inspiration and widening your vocabulary, but you need to remember to find your own voice.

Write a simple party scene. Include dialogue and be clear on the time and place. Now, re-write in the style of Dickens, then again in the style of Poe and finally, in the style of someone more contemporary, for instance, Philippa Gregory or Julian Barnes.

When you’re finished write in your style again and compare.

Writing Prompt: Fancy Dress

When I was little, I loved going through my mother’s wardrobe and trying on her clothes. They were huge on me and her shoes hurt my feet. I loved a particular pair of bright red high heel stilettos that were 3 inches high and looked like they belonged on a actress from “Dallas”. It was the 80’s after all…

Halloween was always my favourite holiday. It was the trick or treating, parties, candy and most of all, the dressing up. We got the neighbourhood kids together each year and tried to put together a haunted house in the back garden.

Try one of these:

1. Write a story about dressing up (fancy dress, transvestite, costume drama, stealing your parent’s/sibling’s clothes).

2. Write a Halloween story.

Writing Prompt: Fruity

I sat at the desk peeling an orange. It was the biggest orange I’ve ever seen, the size of a softball. I’ve been ill lately and decided that I need more vitamin C. As I rummaged through the kitchen I realised there wasn’t any more fruit to be found. Not fresh anyway. Jam, pie, tinned peaches, but nothing fresh. So, I’m off to the shops to buy too much fruit and veg I’ll never eat…

Write a short narrative where fruit is the main feature…here some images to give you inspiration…


Writing Prompt: Angels, Unicorns and Dragons

Write a story about any of these. 

Maybe someone finds a unicorn in the garden. Perhaps the statue of the dragon in Krakow comes to life one day. Maybe a cyclist is killed on the road through his own recklessness and comes back as a guardian angel to the remorseful driver that accidentally killed him? I don’t know which or any of these could work as a story, but it would be interesting to see what I can come up with. Have a go, have fun. 

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