Over the past couple streams, whenever we browsed the Writing Prompts Subreddit, lots of people in chat would suggest even better ideas for prompts than the ones we were choosing from.
So for our most recent stream (with special guest Abbey), we decided to go ahead and create our own writing prompt, and then write it.
To help with that, we came up with a formula for creating a good prompt: normal idea plus twist equals prompt. For example, robots take over the world (normal idea) plus ducks (the twist) equal the prompt: “A.I. robots have taken over the world but have formed a pact with one species: ducks.”
This was a good exercise not only to come up with a prompt, but also for any story you want to write. We’ve all read sci-fi adventures, time travel mishaps, and romance drama novels before, so having a good twist to hook the reader can really make your story stand out.
After coming up with a bunch of fun prompts, we narrowed it down to these three:
#1. The cat yakuza is taking over Edo Japan, and the only ones who can stop them are the hamster samurai.
#2. An author rules over a dystopian nation in order to write her young adult novel.
#3. An epic medieval fantasy world, except horses evolved to ride humans. Today is the day of a jousting tournament.
Personally I was rooting for #2 or #3, but #1 won out in the chat, so we used it for our prompt. (Someday, horses, someday….)
Even though I was unsure about writing about samurai hamsters, thanks to some great suggestions from chat, I think our story turned out pretty good. We didn’t even use 10% of all the suggestions, showing how huge sources of inspiration can sometimes come from the most surprising places.
If you want to join us and help write a story by trolling in chat, or share your own writing for feedback, then we’d love to have you. We stream on Twitch every Sunday, Tuesday, and Thursday at 7:30pm-9:30pm (U.S. Eastern Standard Time).
Hope to see you next time, friend!
Featured image: Deviantart/RickyBryantJr