You need to be writing every single day. That's a difficult task, though. There are mornings where the creative juices don't quite flow. There are evenings where you'd rather just watch sixteen episodes of Scrubs and call it a day. But that's what separates you from the rest of the chaff. That's what makes you a "writer" instead of just some dude named Steve. 

Today, in lieu of another lecture on the form and function of writing, I thought we'd keep it simple. I'm going to give you a few prompts to write, and you're going to knock them out. These are simple writing exercises that I'll use from time to time, whenever I'm stuck on a section of a story. 

It may seem like a waste of time, but I assure you it is the opposite. Consider this a mental warm up, stretching the creative muscles before you lay into a solid workout. Writing is hard, and don't let anyone tell you different. At the end of a particularly aggressive section, I will feel as drained as I do at the end of leg day. 

So check out the prompts below and give it your all. What you create can be as long or short as you want. Well, don't skip out after three words, but don't worry about drafting your next novella either. 


1) It's a calm moment on a battlefield. Describe the scene with as much sensory detail as you can. Why did the fighting stop? Who is on either side? When will it all start up again?

2) A young boy finds cool rock and takes it home. Turns out, it's a dinosaur egg.

3) Aliens arrive, but all they want is to borrow sugar. 

4) A detective has 24 hours to solve his own murder. 

5) Pull a Stephen King: Pick an ordinary object in your life and monsterize it. 

6) Take a trip to Wonderland. Write about a fantastical, almost obnoxiously magical place.

7) A person sits down at a bar and is confused for an elite assassin. What happens next?

8) Describe the perfect six-course meal. Get all George R.R. on that. 

9) Write a scene with two people sitting down and having coffee. One of them has a secret they need to expose. The other has to keep that secret hidden. 

10) Describe a person at the moment of death. What goes through their mind? How do they cope? What do they experience?