Perhaps the last time you encountered a writing prompt was while you attended school and now the last thing you want to do is think about is facing another one. While many people consider prompts as a form of torture that school teachers use on their unwilling students, yet prompts are often willingly used, even embraced, by experienced writers. If you do not see how writing prompts can be useful to you then consider these the following benefits.
Practice Makes Perfect
Well, maybe perfection will never be in your writing future, but it is very true that regular practice is the only way to improve your work. While you may have a long list of ideas and projects to work on you may also want to employ prompts from time to time to fill in the gaps in your writing schedule.
Blast Writer’s Block
When you are experiencing writer’s block with your current project then force yourself to write through it with a series of prompts. This technique can be a very effective way to tear down your writer’s block.
Jog your brain
Do you have trouble getting your brain started in the morning or after a break? Then a writing prompt may be just what you need to get your brain going again.
Inspire your creativity
Do you feel your writing is going stale? Do you need some inspiration? Then using prompts can make a huge difference in your creativity and overall work.
Widen your horizons
Many times we fall into a niche, or even a rut, and forget that there is a much bigger world out there. Writing prompts can force us out of our respective ruts and challenge us to look further afield. This stretching can greatly improve your writing.
Improve your vision
Sometimes we get so caught up in our inner landscape we forget to look at the world around us for inspiration and fodder for our work. Writing prompts often force us to look at the world, specific aspects we may ignore every day, and perhaps look at something in a whole new way.
Make you question
Writing prompts make us look at our writing, our lives, and our world and question what we say, think, and write about — and the why behind those answers. Why and what if are two of the most powerful and inspirational questions a writer can ask of themselves as well as their audience.
Help you learn more about yourself
Writing prompts challenge you to formulate answers and positions on a wide variety of issues and questions. Some you may have thought about a great deal before and others that have not made it on your radar before.
Help you learn more about your writing
Early on in our writing careers and experience we often make judgements about our ability and work. While these may or may not have been accurate at the time, they certainly do not hold true in the long run. Every day, week, month and year that you work on your craft you improve as a writer. And as you grow older and mature, then your thought process will change — and those changes will also reflect in your writing. Prompts may help you more honestly evaluate your strengths and weaknesses.
Create your own swipe file
While you may not see a way to use the responses to your writing prompts today you may well find a market or use for those ideas and words down the road. Sometimes a description might come in handy or a character analysis, and other times simply reviewing some of your past work may well help you overcome writer’s block and inspire a new idea. While the use of prompts is never a waste of time, even if you never reuse a single word, you might be surprised down the road at how many different uses you can put this material to in your professional writing.
As you can see, the use of writing prompts can be tremendously useful no matter what stage your writing career is currently. You may find them so helpful and inspiring that you find yourself using a prompt every day.