June 23, 2018

It has been a while since we posted prompts, but this selection of 82 Writing Experiments by Bernadette Mayer, found on Language is a Virus, seemed just too good to pass up. While you’re there, check out the Text Manipulation and Text Generators links in the sidebars.

More on Bernadette Mayer here.

How to gift a poem…

December 2, 2014

cootie catcher

  • Tweet it a line at a time.
  • Post it on Facebook.
  • Hand-write or print it and put it in a frame.
  • Stamp it into a paver.
  • Stitch it like an old-fashioned sampler.
  • Transfer it onto a t-shirt, mug, bowl, etc.
  • Make a collage out of it.
  • Make a chapbook out of it.
  • Put it in an envelope and mail it.
  • Tuck each line behind a little window, like an Advent calendar.
  • Seal it in a bottle and toss it in the sea with a forwarding address.
  • Laminate it and hang it as a holiday ornament.
  • Write it in lipstick on the mirror
    or chalk on the sidewalk.
  • Blog it.
  • YouTube it.
  • Record it and MP3 it.
  • Geo-cache it.
  • Origami it.
  • Roll it like a scroll and put it in a Christmas stocking, basket, candy box, saucepan, pillowcase, jacket pocket.
  • Inscribe it in something weatherproof and stake it in the garden.
  • Write it in sand and take a picture from above.
  • Memorize it and say it aloud.
  • Etc.

. . . . .

give words!

November 28, 2014

Banned Book Socks
Whether you’re shopping for a poet, a poetry lover or someone who doesn’t think about poetry very much, there are plenty of wonderfully poetic ways to give gifts this holiday season. So if you plan to shop, put your money where your heart is.

Here are a few ideas to get you started…

We aren’t suggesting you should a) shop or b) spend a bunch of money. But if you DO give holiday (or other) gifts, we hope this little list might launch your creativity. (We’d love to hear your other ideas. Leave a comment!)
. . . . .
Banned Book Socks

just one word

September 12, 2014


This little wordplay, which is borrowed from the word-savvy folks at Grammarly (who borrowed and reworked it from curlicuecal), is not only fun but instructive. While not every word has the sense-altering impact of only, the exercise of moving the word through the sentence illustrates the significance of placement and how meaning can be changed by repositioning a single word. Try it with your own writing, not necessarily with the word only, but by shifting just one word through your lines of text to see what happens…

poetry prompts…20

March 8, 2013

lit bulb
Stumped for ideas? Here are a few additions to our collection of prompt sources:

You’ll find a miscellany of prompts and writing at Creative Writing Prompts for Writers.

At Poetry Forge, Holly Wren Spaulding offers a growing collection of prompts.

Thanks to Chuck Wendig/terrible minds (NSFW!) for pointing us to the Random Sentence Generator. Random up a sentence and write a poem!

More poetry prompt posts.

poetry prompts…19

February 6, 2013

lit bulbThe Northwest weather is trying to convince us that it’s spring. NaHaiWriMo and A Month of Letters are doing their best to get our creative engines running. But February still seems a little sleepy, so here are a few places to find prompts for juicy poetry:

Click the button on the Bibliomancy Oracle and you’ll get a surprising little snippet of randomly-generated literature, yours to interpret or use as a launching pad for greater things. The Oracle is at the tumblr address, but you can also visit/like them on Facebook.

Also over at the ever-fascinating tumblr, Hourly Writing Prompts delivers on the promise of its name: once an hour, a word to inspire you. Uninspired? Wait an hour or choose an earlier prompt.

Here’s a list of 50 poetry prompts from LitBridge.  (There’s a lot more at LitBridge, so have a look around while you’re there. They’re on Facebook, too.)

Catch up on previous poetry prompt posts.

shout it out…

January 30, 2013

30-ways croppedPerhaps, like many writers, you’ve made a commitment to go public by posting your words on a blog. Some people subscribe, click Like or leave comments. But you’re not exactly burning up the internet with traffic. Well, Andreea Ayers over at Launch Grow Joy has some suggestions for you. Have a look at her chart, 30 Ways to Promote Your Blog Posts. If you’re selling products, Andreea has lots of marketing suggestions for those, too, so browse around. You can also find Launch Grow Joy on Facebook.

visualize poetry – 2

January 26, 2013

picture frameNeed a prompt? Here’s something quirky that’s just asking for poems… The Cooper-Hewitt, National Design Museum, a part of the Smithsonian, has in its collection a large number of objects that are cataloged but do not have accompanying images, as, for example, here. As the site explains, the image is not displayed because “we have not yet digitized this object or, if we do have a digitized image, we don’t hold the rights to show it publicly.”

Now, Micah Walter in the Cooper-Hewitt Labs has posted a random assortment of these un-imaged objects to a tumblr site, Curatorial Poetry. What you see is the object catalog number and its description. You get to imagine everything else…and, if you’d like, submit it, though there’s no knowing where submissions go or whether they will be displayed.

You can also visit Curatorial Poetry on Facebook and find out more about the tech behind the tumblr (and Micah Walter) here. And if Curatorial Poetry doesn’t ring your chimes, have a look at the Cooper-Hewitt’s Object of the Day, which just might propel your imagination in new directions.
. . . . .

what to do next…

November 25, 2012

Language is a VirusThe cursor flashes on the blank screen. The clock ticks. You wait. You wait.

If you’re ready to stop waiting, ready for a little writer-assist — or a little writer-fun — hasten yourself over to Language is a Virus. There you’ll find writing games, exercises and articles, poetry generators (!) and NaNoWriMo tools (sure it’s almost the end of November, but it’s never too late…and you’re going to keep writing, right?). They even have a Pet Name Generator! Surely you can find something on this crazy site to prompt a poem.

But, in case Language is a Virus fails to eject you from inaction, you could have a look at other posts tagged poetry prompts.

poetry prompts…17

September 11, 2012

inspirationJust in case you’re on the verge of running out of ideas, here’s another installation of Poetry Prompts, an occasional review of links where you’ll find ideas to fuel your writing.

On her author site, Magic in the Backyard, Kellie Elmore offers a “Prompt Playground” with “various challenges to keep your muse entertained.”

We’ve mentioned PoeWar before but a collection of 30 prompts has been added since our previous post. Find it here.

On, the study guide, “Additional Poetry Exercises Help,” offers eight detailed exercises excerpted from the book Creative Writing Demystified, including some by Susan Rich, Michael Dylan Welch and Holly Hughes.

You can also peruse our earlier posts tagged Poetry Prompts.

Happy writing!

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