Sunday, October 11, 2009

Writing Exercise Prompts for the Week of October 11, 2009

I wrote recently that to be a writer, you have to write; everyday. Sometimes it’s easier to do a 20-minute writing exercise if you have something to write about. So I’ve added a series of writing prompts for this week. Now, this being the month of Halloween, and me being an author of speculative fiction, these have a bit of a horror theme to them.

Sunday, October 11th Write about a time you were scared. This shouldn’t be a life-threatening or traumatic event, but a time when you were fun-scared, like someone coming up behind you and popping a plastic bag to make you jump.

Monday, October 12th – Use this as a catalyst for your writing; “What are you chicken? I dare you to go inside.”

Tuesday, October 13th – What’s your favorite scary ride at the theme park? Maybe it’s your least favorite because it’s too scary, or it scared you too much when your rode it. Write about it.

Wednesday, October 14th – Remember a time when you were a kid watching a horror movie and couldn’t go to sleep that night.

Thursday, October 15th – Did you have a monster in your closet? Maybe it was under your bed, or in the basement. Or maybe it was a recurring nightmare. Write about it.

Friday, October 16th – What are you afraid of? Spiders? Snakes? Heights? Perhaps you’re claustrophobic. Can you write about it?

Saturday, October 17th – Write a ghost story. We’ve all heard them. It doesn’t matter if you’re retelling an old tell. Retell it in your own way with your own voice.

Here’s another idea for a bonus writing exercise this week. Take your laptop with you into a cemetery at dusk and write as it starts getting dark. See what your imagine dredges up. Or perhaps a long-forgotten memory.

One thing to remember about these writing exercises is that they are only practice. There’s no right or wrong way to do it. Maybe you start going in one direction and find your story moving in an entirely different direction. Just go with it. Remember, the goal here is to write.

I hope you enjoy these. Feel free to leave me a comment and let me know. And you never know, maybe one of these prompts will be a catalyst for a story you can submit to The Dunesteef October Scary Story Event or the Microhorror Halloween Story Contest. Good luck if it does.

I will post more of these next week. You can find The Dunesteef Audio Fiction Magazine at: You can find Microhorror at: And you can find me at


  1. You rock, Dougster. These are great prompts and I intend to use one this week!

  2. You know, Mary Ann, I can help you with the wormhole technology thing. Enochians(c) have had that technology for nearly 4000 years. It's amazing what you can do when your kind lives for nearly a millennium. ;-)

  3. Your prompts always generate great ideas for me!