Released writing prompts are often used as assessment tools. In some cases, they are used within the school system to test the progress of the students. They might be used as admission tests for certain colleges. However, if you were to peruse the various writers' websites on the Internet, you would find that many make use of this technique.
What are Released Writing Prompts?
Think of a released writing prompt as a muse. It's an idea that sparks your creativity, and inspires you to write brilliant and insightful stories. These prompts will usually be suitable to specific types of writing. For example, the The Pennsylvania Department of Education defines three different modes of writing:
- Informational Writing: The role of the informational writer is to educate and share information. This type of writer needs the ability to report, summarize, analyze and organize. The ability to look at cause and effect is also crucial to this type of writing. Keep in mind, informational writing is not advertorial. Posing an advertisement as information is considered to be bad form in the writing industry.
- Narrative Writing: Narrative writers are story tellers. They have the ability to bring the reader into to the story. The best narrative writers have the ability to make the reader see, hear, feel, touch, smell and taste the background of the story. These are the writers that show instead of tell.
- Persuasive Writers: The power of persuasion is a valuable skill. Some have it, others do not. Persuasive writers may either work to sell a product, or to convince the reader of a specific opinion. The most important thing persuasive writers need to remember is that they should never insult their reader.
Released Writing Prompts for Informational Writers
If you are thinking of becoming a feature article writer, you'll need to brush up on your informational writing skills. Here are some writing prompts:
- In the past decade, there have been numerous changes in the fitness industry. Describe these changes. What are the new fitness guidelines?
- What are antioxidants?
- Describe the changes in the current health care system.
- Describe the current housing market.
Notice that none of these involve opinion. Just the facts, ma'am.
Writing Prompts for Narrative Writers
Narrative writers are often biography writers, memoir writers and fiction writers. They need the ability to bring a story to life. Narrative writers also make excellent travel writers. Here are some writing prompts that will help you bring a bit of spark to your story.
- You're 13 years old and starting to develop. However, your mother thought that you can still get away with wearing last year's bathing suit. You jump into the pool. Describe what happens.
- It's been a few years since the Thailand tsunami. Describe the renovations. What does the area look like now?
- Your boyfriend breaks up with you a week before your Sweet 16. On the day of the big event, he walks in with your best friend. How did you feel? What happened afterward? How did it affect your view on life?
Prompts for Persuasive Writers
You have a point to make and want to make it well. You have a product to sell, and your salary is dependent on your ability to sell it. You need persuasive writing skills. Here are some prompts.
- A Colorado State Representative candidate proposes a monorail from Denver to the ski areas. Explain to your reader why this is a good idea, and this candidate is the best person to do the job.
- You've developed a new exercise machine. Why should people use it?
- Create an ideal health care system and persuade your reader to support it.
Where to Find Writing Prompts
Here are some websites that feature writing prompts.