Reason to believe in prompts

I have every reason to believe in the use of prompts as ever since I picked up a copy of ‘A Writer’s Book of Days’ by Judy Reeves, the practice of writing in response to a prompt has greatly improved my writing.


I’m currently doing quite a bit of reading on the subject of mindfulness and I’d strongly recommend ‘Mindfulness for Creativity,’ by Dr Danny Penman.

In this book he says that mindfulness helps you to

observe how much of your life is controlled by habitual ways of thinking and approaching the world

and he suggests the practice of ‘habit breaking’ which will

broaden awareness, spark curiosity and open the doors to serendipity

I believe that this can be the case with writing. We very often write about topics which we feel we know well, and it could be that the end result is jaded and unimaginative. Writing on a prompt about which you (believe) you know very little can trigger your creative mind into producing something which you might never have done were you to sit down and write about a familiar subject.

I have to agree with Lisa Kraft’s comment,

Prompts are both joyful discovery and intense frustration.

However, I’m now inclined to think that the ‘joyful discovery’ generally outweighs the ‘intense frustration’, and because of this I strongly recommend the use of prompts as a aid to creativity.

This post is in response to The Daily Post prompt: Reason to Believe