Writing prompts… or maybe not?

I was trying to think of inspiration for a post.  That got me thinking about trying to find inspiration for writing, and, well… I’ve really enjoyed Writer’s Digest’s prompts lately, and was wondering about creating my own, so I would have a funny story to post and maybe get someone to try it themselves.

So I started looking around my apartment.  Then I opened up the pictures on my phone.  I was curious to see if say, choosing three things and basing a story on them would be an effective writing prompt.  But given that I take a lot of pictures of cats, have a large assortment of sci-fi and fantasy LEGOs, and collect dragons, there isn’t a lot of diversity to be found to base a story on.  There are pictures of weird mushrooms and bubble tank particle tracks and boggle and oh look more cats and stupid answers to freshman chemistry questions and more cats… you get the idea.

So, what I guess I’m saying is… I don’t look for inspiration.  Well, I do… but I inevitably fail; I’ve never been good at it.  It either comes to me in this weird brain full of dragons and chemistry and oh look a kitten and monkeys and toast and otters and lizards and scented candles and half-formed book ideas and mostly forgotten dreams and holy cow how many cats are there in here!?

The best I have so far is designing a mad-lib, filling in the words, and taking off from there.  Which actually sounds pretty fun.  I may have to do that.

So what about you?  Do you guys have any suggestions for coming up with your own exercises (and I mean other than Googling them- sometimes you just have a notebook, and not the computer kind)?

If you share your own prompts, I’d be happy to give a try at them!