Writing prompts are very useful and necessary tools for writers to use. Yes, you have those projects you are working on all the time but it is a good idea to stir up the creative juices by throwing in something totally different whenever you can. This process allows you to free yourself from the confines and the binding stress of having to produce only one massive thing that may stretch before you without end, and only remind you of how long it has taken to get to this very point.
It does not pull you away from your goal of finishing that specific writing project. It does, however, fuel the fire.
By challenging yourself to write something totally different at intervals during a large project, you keep your creativity fresh and alive. Step away from the novel and the research and treat yourself to a writing prompt that will produce an off-the-wall, new, way-out-there piece of writing. Let the prompt take you to places you have not gone with your writing; create a new character and a new plot within a short piece of writing that allows you to see beginning, middle and end. It might even inspire a longer version at some point in the future.
The whole idea of the prompt is to keep ideas fresh and flowing. Once you have enjoyed the treat, you can return to your project.
You will be surprised that the fluid motion of free-fall and prompt writing lubricates the creative muscles and brings a renewed freshness to your longer work.
In the same way we are inspired by others and their writing, we can inspire ourselves by experiencing any and all writing exercises. You might not even share these with others but they are still a boon to enhancing your own skills and honing your craft. If you do choose to share, do so with those who can give constructive feedback based on the prompt and your attempt to “step outside the box.”
Remember, as writers the most important thing is to keep on writing. When the creativity feels stale and you are chugging along, poking at the keys – try a prompt. You will feel refreshed and invigorated. Opening yourself up to the opportunity allows you to channel those words to paper. A patterned attempt at these will surprise you, for inside the writer there dwells another realm where stories are constantly brewing…