Let’s face it: writing is hard work. It’s difficult even when you know what you want to write about and it’s downright excruciating when you have no inspiration at all. I mean, the previous two sentences took me eight hours to write and it’s crap. So I know what it feels like when your muse abandons you, running off sans warning with the unctuous, greasy-haired, cowboy hat-wearing, Kid Rock look-alike neighbor after leaving behind a pair of her black, crotchless (taunting) panties lying on the bed you shared with the whore for three years, absconding because she believed the fucking lies spewed by her skanky bitch girlfriend. Yes, I completely understand. So to help my fellow inspiration-challenged, muse-abandoned quill drivers, I offer the gift of writing prompts comprised of slightly provocative situations and dialogue to give you a creative kick in the ass. The situations and dialogue may be familiar to some writers; I know I’ve experienced most of these situations myself. Like me, you may have not realized that such earthy, everyday occurrences could be worthy of artful prose.
Interspersed throughout the list are special Try This writing prompts. Several Try This prompts require some physical activity and are designed to function much like Emerson’s and Thoreau’s transcendental walks, fomenting profundity and sapience through bodily exertion.
Now it is time to choose a prompt and begin writing in order to lure that muse back. Once the muse is within reach, snatch her cheating little neck with both hands, give her a bit of a throttle, and don’t let go until you’ve created your literary masterpiece. Afterwards, go ahead and fuck up that lying skank bitch who started this shit.
—Every now and then, you poke your head out of the warm, moist cavity to see what’s up.
—Though you’re extremely proud of your new invention, you did not anticipate the severe bleeding caused by its proper use.
—”Time to hide,” Gloria said, as she wrapped the banjo strings around the charred remains.
Try This: Drive into oncoming traffic. Watch the reactions and facial expressions of the other drivers. Write for at least twenty minutes about the experience with a special emphasis on describing in exact detail accidents caused.
—While pitching a movie idea to a well-known producer, he opens his desk drawer, pulls out a dark object, and flings it at you. That’s the last thing you remember.
—You find a group of gay elves living in your favorite hat.
—After he explained the logic behind his vivisection device, we realized the lead aeronautical engineer had taken the project in a whole new direction.
—Leonard told the flight attendant about the leaking, sticky hat boxes in the overhead compartment.
Try This: Childhood offers an abundance of delightful writing ideas. Write about some of your most cherished memories such as the time you mistakenly took your mom’s tee-ball-bat-sized ebony dildo and Ben Wa balls to school for show and tell. Or write about a favorite holiday memory like the year the yuletide log popped and sent a glowing ember onto the back of the cat thus setting it on fire and causing the panicked pussy to run caterwauling under the dried Christmas tree (which in turn set the tree on fire that eventually consumed your uninsured house and left you and your family living in an abandoned school bus for three years). Twenty minutes. Begin.
—Because of short-term memory loss, you have trouble recalling what you just wrote because of short-term memory loss.
—Just when you think the game is over, along comes the screeching, red thing.
—”Hey y’all, let’s just throw rocks at it until it goes away.”
Try This: Dialogue reveals character. Cruise through the seedy side of town until you find a group of loitering ladies of the night. Approach the biggest (possibly transgendered) one and bitch slap that ho. Listen to and later write down the colorful dialogue this action provokes.
—Everybody knew about Dorothy’s secret, but being a dumbass, you had to learn the hard way.
—You suspected your girlfriend of faking orgasms, but when you glance down at her crotch during sex, you realize that’s not all she’s faking.
—As the fall leaves burst into glorious color, so does a certain part of your body.
—After removing and placing her panties in the return envelope, Susie burst into tears.
Try This: Emotional writing pulls the reader into the story. Think of a time when you were overcome by emotions, be it fear, sadness, anger, horniness. Keep your hand moving for twenty minutes. Don’t use words. Begin.
—”Easy with the hands, buddy, those are real kumquats.”
—Having left a lucrative forensics accounting career to follow his passion, Craig secured a job writing subtitles for foreign, gay porno films.
—The moon shone bright the night Kari lost her virginity to Ron Popeil’s latest erotic invention.
Try This: Today, think about sex. Write about a favorite sexual fantasy, such as the one involving trannies’ panties and other edibles. Or write about your three-way fantasy involving the boss’s paraplegic wife and your fundamentalist neighbor. You know how your girlfriend’s skanky girlfriend thinks you’re a repressed, diseased cum guzzler and is constantly badgering your ass about the time she “allegedly” caught you giving a blowjob to a she-male behind a dumpster next to the Quickie Mart where the skank worked? Well, write about what you would do to that blackmailing bitch with a monkey wrench and a monkey. Don’t hold back.
—Dave’s avant-garde, psycho sexual experiments with marsupials engendered feelings of jealousy, rage, and confusion in his common-law wife Jane.
—The oral history interview is progressing nicely until the retired General stands, drops his trousers, and asks if you would also like to interview his shell-shocked scrotum.
—Harvey starts gagging after biting into what he thought was a stewed prune he found in the abandoned house.
—”And you wonder why you haven’t won an Einstein award,” Paula said, as Charlie stuck his burning head in the toilet.
Try This: Describe how it feels to kill someone. If you haven’t murdered anyone, choose a victim (such as your girlfriend’s skanky girlfriend) and savor all the details. Take your notebook and make an entry in the victim’s blood. Go for at least ten minutes.
—While strolling through a quarry, you hear one boulder say to another boulder, “Don’t be such a hard-ass.”
—You know that severed head you’re pushing around in a wheelbarrow? It’s startin’ to talk.
—Eric felt that the mind-altering drugs he ingested expanded his ken and mystical insight several layers deep into his subconsciousness even though he usually found himself waking up in a public park naked, crying, and clutching a department store mannequin.
Try This: Write about a time when you were in a bit of trouble, a time when you found yourself in the midst of a royally fucked up situation, such as being arrested for soliciting a transvestite hooker, being taped by the security camera at work masturbating in the break room to a photo of your boss’s wife, accidentally choking a monkey to death during a role-playing game, murdering a skank, or having your blood-stained writer’s journal submitted as evidence during your murder trial. Write thirty to life.