Today’s online writing groups’ poetry and story exercises: 6 July 2016

*** If you enjoy these prompts, or are looking to improve your writing or submit a manuscript, do take a look at my seven online courses… six currently half price (coupon codes on the online courses page) and one FREE!, and / or my Writer’s Block Workbooks… my best-selling eBooks – now available in eBook and paperback format!

Every weekday I post a set of poetry prompts on and a set of story prompts on the scriptnovel and short story blogs. As you’ll see by the heading numbers, you may have missed a few but the links are listed on the relevant group’s Exercises page so you can always find them there. So here are your poetry and short story exercises…

Poetry Writing Exercises 905: Wednesday 6th July

Here are your four poetry exercises for today. If you enjoy these prompts, do take a look at my online courses… six are currently half price (when using the coupon codes on my main blog’s online courses page) and another is FREE!

Time yourself for 15 minutes per exercise, having a break in between each one or move on to the next.  When you’ve finished, do pop over to this blog’s Facebook Group and let everyone know how you got on.

905 smile-face-wallpaper 908372Below are the four – you can do them in any order.

  1. Keywords: clean, look, places, acceptable, antiquated
  2. Random: not messing about
  3. Picture: what does this inspire?
  4. Sentence start: The world only saw…

Have fun, and if you would like to, do paste your writing in the comment boxes below so we can see how you got on! Remember though that it counts as being published so don’t post anything that you would want to submit elsewhere (where they require unpublished material).

See below for explanations of the prompts, they do vary…

  • Sentence starts = what it says on the tin. You can use it at the beginning of the poem or include it later, and being poetry it doesn’t have to be exact – just be inspired by it.
  • Keywords = the words have to appear in the poem but can be in any order and can be lengthened (e.g. clap to clapping).
  • Single-word prompt = sometimes all it takes is one word to spawn an idea. Sometimes it easy, sometimes hard but invariably fun.
  • Mixed bag = an object, a location, a colour.
  • Picture prompts = nothing other than a picture. What does it conjure up?
  • Title = The title for your piece.
  • Haiku poem= 5 syllables, 7 syllables, 5 syllables
  • Random = whatever takes my fancy!


Story Writing Exercises 909: Wednesday 6th July

Here are your four story exercises for today. If you enjoy these prompts (or are looking to improve your writing or submit a manuscript), do take a look at my online courses… six are currently half price (when using coupon codes) and the other is FREE!

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The Handmaid’s Tale by Margaret Atwood

An interesting review of a book I’ve always meant to read… by the Crazy Book Lady. 🙂


There is nothing like reading an old book, it’s pages yellowed with age. I stumbled across a copy of the Handmaid’s Tale in my favourite second-hand book store and had been meaning to read it after hearing so many good things about it. The Handmaid’s Tale tells the story of Offred, a woman living in the dystopian society of Gilead. A society where women have no rights, they are merely a possession with a role to fulfil. Offred’s role is that of a handmaiden. Her role is simply to pro-create. This book tells of her life trying to navigate this strict society with unyielding laws of how to act while also throwing back to her life before everything changed. A life where she has a husband and a daughter.

This book comes highly regarded and is referred to often. After reading The Heart Goes Last I was determined to read…

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