Pieces Prompt

Reese's Pieces CookiesOur lives and the fictional lives we entertain ourselves with are comprised of pieces. We can divide them by large pieces, such as years, or minuscule pieces, such as this morning’s breakfast. Without even one piece, our daily routine would be different and we would lead an altered life.

What are your favorite pieces of your life?

What were the first pieces that popped into your mind?

Now, write those down on slips of paper.

What are your favorite books, television shows, and movies?

What are your favorite pieces from those characters’ lives?

Write some of  those down on slips of paper.

Paper and HatNow, place all of those pieces of paper in a hat and draw out as many pieces as you would like. The more pieces you draw, the longer your story will be. You can always add more pieces if you find yourself in need of a few more components to choose from. (Click here if you want to use an online randomizer. This one only goes one at a time, but it will work for multiple draws.)

Option 1: The pieces you selected are the plot for your next story. You have to use each piece of your life or a fictional life in the order that you drew them.

Option 2: The pieces you drew are the backstory for one or more of your characters. The sequence of events you selected will outline your character’s past. You can repeat this process for as many characters as you would like.

Option 3: Go crazy and combine Options 1 and 2 to create the plot of your story and the lives within it.

Reese’s Pieces Cookie Picture

Pieces of Paper in a Hat Photograph


Forecasting Prompt

Tectonic PlatesOur planet is constantly changing. From the slow movement of tectonic plates to violent earthquakes, the surface of our home is altered daily. Some natural processes are gradual, like tectonic shifting, while others are devastatingly rapid, like earthquakes. Mechanisms such as seafloor spreading and volcanic eruptions utilize the same material with very different results.

These forces can be predictable or occur without warning.

Armageddon ForecastWhat would your character forecast be like if your characters reacted to their circumstances in the same way that the earth changed? How would characters based off of natural phenomena react to each other?

A mild-mannered girl could be a super-volcano that is on the verge of eruption.

A character could be static, yet produce great changes when they move an inch.

A boy could have a burning passion with inextinguishable flames.

A significant other could be the electrifying element of another’s life.

Disney TitansHow would these characters interact?

Which forces of nature would collide or cooperate within the story?


Will they cause titanic destruction or will they be a force for good?

Are some destined to be uncontrollable while others are meant to be reigned in?


No matter what your character forecast is, it’s bound to be gravitating.


Tectonic Plate Map

Armageddon Forecast

Disney Titans

Redwood Forest Prompt

Redwood PathThe majestic wood is inhabited by creatures who seem to evade your gaze while analyzing your every step. The ancient redwoods tower above you as if they were an impenetrable fortress. Gradually, the beavers and deer come into the open. The mountain lions and bobcats peacefully wander off in the distance. A smooth creek is occasionally interrupted by gentle, bubbling swells. Groups of salmon and otters navigate the placid waters. Upstream a juvenile bear disrupts the glass-like surface as it snatches a salmon. The beasts do not concern themselves with your presence.

Your stroll leads you into a wide clearing. The deer paths you followed lay to the south while a great giant lies fallen to the north. The sky is speckled with wispy, dancing clouds. The setting sun bursts through the line of trees to the west and illuminates the leaves with deep shades of red and orange.

a fallen giantYou approach the marred redwood and examine its scarred trunk. The branches that used to oversee the forest are now a mangled mass of of twisted wood. As you near the stump, the stench of lightning emanates from the splintered base. A charred oval, broken between the two parts of the tree, reveals the location of the fatal strike. You round the edge of the tree and inspect the base. To your surprise, an object protrudes from the blackened wood.

What is the object that you discovered in the redwood’s stump?

What events led to its presence in the forest and absorption into the tree trunk?

What do you do with the object?

Path in a Redwood Forest

Fallen Redwood


Shoes Prompt

Your typical round of icebreaker games consists of questions that force you search your soul. Not really, but you are pressured by the possibility of sharing something that isn’t fit to the setting. Common games include “Two Truths and a Lie” and “Which Dead Famous Person Would You Want to Have Dinner With?” (Hopefully after you raised them from the dead. A skeleton wouldn’t be the most entertaining guest.) These games are designed to lead you to share about yourself through a story. You normally have to tell a story about your interesting truths and your unique dinner guest. The goal of playing an icebreaker is to enable others to put themselves in your shoes, even if it’s only for a few seconds.

Gandhi and LincolnBut what about those famous soles that you want to put yourself in through dinner? You might want to have dinner with Gandhi or Abraham Lincoln, but who would they want to dine with? Who do you think served as their role models and inspiration? Famous people are just normal people, who through extreme circumstances and an astonishing will to act, who did something extraordinary. Maybe one day when you or I become famous we’ll have people who want to dine with us, but for now we’ll just look back at the past.


Presidential Games Prompt

imageHow would a Hunger Games between all of the presidential candidates play out?

Which candidates would you consider to be the careers? What items would sponsors send to candidates with parachutes? Which elements (cannon firings, music, alliances, etc.) of the Hunger Games would change based off of the tributes? What items would the cornucopia possess? Who would be the first candidate to go?

Most Importantly: Who will be crowned victor and our Commander in Chief?

Write your version of the Hunger Games and may the odds be ever in your favor.

You Decide Picture

Dessert Prompt

SmoresYou’re staring down a luxurious buffet of desserts. You can eat as many as you want (You’re in the realm of imagination. Weight gain and upset stomachs are nonexistent here.). Each and every dessert has been perfectly crafted, but something is missing. Each delicacy is fantastic on its own, but they could be so much more together.

You take your fork and start combining bites of each treat. It doesn’t work and you’re still unsatisfied. Disheartened, you make your way back to your house. You step over the threshold and have a brilliant idea: combine the desserts.

You impatiently open Chrome and begin to scroll through Pinterest. Suddenly, a heavenly glow descends from the ceiling and you can hear angelic voices: you have found your two desserts (You’re in your mind, remember?).

Hastily you begin to assemble the ingredients you need to make your ultimate dessert marriage a reality. After you have crafted your confection, you gently take your first bite and give yourself a round of applause as flavors explode in your mouth.

What did you experience during your dessert adventure? What desserts did you chose to combine? How do you describe your first bite of your wondrous creation? Are you going to allow your dessert to escape your imagination?

If anyone makes a fantastic dessert, in their mind or kitchen, I want to hear about it!

The Choosing Prompt

FullSizeRender-4What are your three favorite books? Those wonderful pieces of art that you open and new worlds unfold. Those books that can only be described by insisting “Read this, now.” Which books give you that high of placing yourself inside another dimension?

Open your three and read the first sentence of each. Using only the first sentence from each of your favorite books, write a new sentence (changing tense when needed). This sentence is the beginning of whatever you choose to write.

If you can’t choose three (I struggled for a bit), then rank your favorite books (if that is even possible) and take the first sentence out of each. Use every three books as a group for a sentence.

Your sentence doesn’t have to be long and complicated. Choose the story you want to tell and then use the three sentences to start it. Keeping some of the original phrases intact will help you to get started. Take the bits from each sentence that you envision leading into your story . Work with those bits until you get the first sentence.

The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time: “It was 7 minutes after midnight.”

The Help: “Mae Mobley was born early on a early Sunday morning in August 1960.”

The Fault in Our Stars: “Late in the winter of my seventeenth year, my mother decided I was depressed, presumably because I rarely left the house, spent quite a lot of time in bed, read the same book over and over, ate infrequently, and devoted quite a bit of my abundant free time thinking about death.”

My Sentence: It was midnight, early Sunday morning, and I was free.


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