4 Prompts from one of my favorite prompt books, The 4 A.M. Breakthrough, by Brian Kiteley
1. Write about a shopping list, as if this shopping list had much more meaning than it could possibly hold. Imagine this list found hundreds of years later and analyzed for hidden meaning (or perhaps without understanding of its original and simple meanings).
2. Imagine overhearing a conversation between two intimates—a married couple, siblings, or old friends who have weathered many fights. Your observer has happened upon these two people in the middle of a heated, emotional conversation. The person who hears this talk cannot be seen. Work at both the intensity of the words and the inarticulateness a moment like this can provoke.
3. Write a 250-word story in which you never use the same word twice—each of the 250 words is different. You may not use a variation of a word, like you’ll after you’ve already used you.
4. Write a piece of fiction over a year. Make it fifty-two sentences long. Write one sentence a week. Work on this sentence very carefully. Don’t plan the next sentence when you’re working on this one sentence. You can and should certainly look back at your previous sentences. The subject of the story should be in part the passage of one year and whatever changes this year has wrought on a handful of fictional characters.