Writing Exercise: Word Sparks

Here is a great exercise for those who are stumped thinking about what to write about. xx

Creative Writing @ Seneca


Stuck for what to write? Sometimes inspiration for a story comes from a single word, or two words in combination. Try this exercise we did in class.

Prep: Write out a couple dozen descriptive, unrelated words and pop them into a “hat”, envelope, pot or something you can draw them from.


1. Pick a word randomly from your “hat.”

2. Search for it’s common meanings in a dictionary if you don’t already know them. (Sometimes even words we’re familiar with have additional meanings we’re unfamiliar with, so this step can be more interesting than you think!)

3. Write a paragraph, or two, or more…inspired by that word. For instance, the word could be the title of the piece. Or it could be the topic or theme. Maybe it’s the place of the action or the name of a character, even a keyword for the mood. How about a snippet…

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