Overcome Writer's Block With These 7 Situational Writer Prompts

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Writer’s block: the dreaded enemy of writers everywhere.

Knowing that “it happens to everyone” and “you’ll get over it” is well and good (and true), but it doesn’t make you feel any better as a writer when you’re struggling to traverse the creative desert of a bad case of writer’s block.

Just like a slumping Major League Baseball player, the only real way out of a slump is to keep hitting (or in your case, writing). Write anything. Write at different times of the day or night. Write in different locations. Write stuff that will never see the light of day. Just. Keep. Writing.

That’s where this article comes in.

In order to keep you writing and to get those creative juices flowing again, here are 7 situational writing prompts to help you break that writer’s block.

Simply read these prompts, pick one that speaks to you, and finish the scene or story with your own words. It doesn’t matter if it’s very long or any good, it just matters that you’re continuing the practice of writing so you can get back to your normal self: a writer brimming with creativity!

And, hey, if you write something you DO like, send it to us via email, Twitter, or Facebook. We’d love to celebrate the end of your writer’s block with you!

You got this!

Writer’s block writing prompt #1:

Sherry was ill. She’d been ill for months now and wasn’t sure how much longer she could take the constant feeling of dread that she would never feel like her old self again. Sitting in an antique rocker, her lap covered with the hand-knitted shawl from her grandmother that she’d kept with her for as long as she could remember, Sherry couldn’t hide her surprise when the door opened and in walked the last person she expected to see on this cold, wintry Iowa day…

Writer’s block writing prompt #2:

I’ve never been one for parties. Lavish events, surrounded by people (well-wishers or otherwise) looking to make small talk sounds more like a nightmare than a reason to get dressed up and put on uncomfortable shoes. So when I found myself at the White House for their annual December Gala, I was less than thrilled. That is, until I read the name on the table card at the seat next to me…

Writer’s block writing prompt #3:

It was the kind of morning that made you feel a certain way. And that certain way was nauseous. To be clear, this feeling in the pit of my stomach wasn’t unique to this morning. It had been growing for days. Weeks even. But this morning, as I stared out the frost-edged windows of my parents’ living room, I knew this would be the day that would change everything, for better or worse, forever. One hour from now, just as the sun peeked over the horizon, I would step out the front door and…

Writer’s block writing prompt #4:

Call me Ishmael. No, wait, that’s already taken. Call me Blake. Yeah, that’s a believable name. No, I’m not a grifter. Why would you ask? I’ve never made my living conning people out of their money. It’s just a hobby. That is, until Lynn walked into the Tipton Diner just before noon one day last July. To my surprise, she sat down on the stool next to me and proceeded to order more food than a single human could possibly eat. Then, as the waitress incredulously turned to fill her order, she looked me straight in the eye and said, “...

Writer’s block writing prompt #5:

Ruth never knew the truth. In fact, there was a lot Ruth never knew about her parents. Growing up in a hyper-religious community, removed from most of the world by miles, forests, culture, and so much more, she had assumed that the world she could see around her was the only world that existed. She never questioned that her parents may have had a life before joining the remote religious sect in which she grew up. That is, until she looked behind the old dresser in her parents’ bedroom and discovered…

Writer’s block writing prompt #6:

Lightning was a harbinger of doom. Or so Amy Stenta, who lived on a quiet street in Rahway, NJ, thought as she huddled under the overhang of her porch, eyes fixed on the end of her short driveway. The rain was falling in sheets, and had been for hours now, but the streaks of lightning illluninating the sky at regular intervals was something new. And it scared her. She knew that the last time the lightning came, it brought with it…

Writer’s block writing prompt #7:

The tapping was incessant. Lloyd Moody was nearly going out of his skull from the obnoxious sound of Tom Kehl’s cheap, blue, medium tip, Papermate pen rapidly hitting the conference room table. Walter fixated on it. He’d known Tom for years. He’d endured Tom’s constant pen tapping for nearly as long. Walter knew Tom’s history and that he was fragile, but this was the last straw. Walter stood up and approached Tom. The words that would come out of Walter’s mouth in the next second would change both of their lives in ways neither of them could have guessed. “Tom,...”

Hopefully these writing prompts and story-starters can get you back on track with your writing.

Another thing that can help with writer’s block is to get solid feedback on your writing or manuscript. Good news: that’s what we do! Check out our feedback report options to get the feedback you need.