Writing Prompt – Thursday 21st January

Begin by making a list of a person, a place, a time of year and a time of day. Think of something that person wants very badly. Think of something that is stopping them from achieving this.

Is it a person? If so, who is it?

What can they do about it? Make a list of their options.

Create the beginning of a story.

Think of three possible endings.

Writing Prompt – Thursday 14th January

You find this box on your doorstep. It has your name on it.

What do you do next?

Do you pick it up? If so – is it light or heavy? What does it feel like in your hands?

Can you smell anything?

Is there any clue as to who left it there?

Do you open the box?

If so – what is inside it?

Free-write for ten minutes. See how many stories or poems you can create from the raw material.


Writing Prompt – Thursday 7th January 2021

As we begin Lockdown 3 in the UK, there is no better time to begin a new writing project or revive an old one. You have nothing to lose.

Use the weather as inspiration. Set the timer for five minutes and free-write using all the senses. You will find this useful later in the year when you are revising a winter scene!

Write a list of winter-related words – e.g. ice, sharp, bleak, white, frost, sleet, snow, skid, iron. See if you can create a poem or a flash fiction story.

Writing Prompt – Happy New Year

Happy New Year – and best wishes for a happy, healthy and creative 2021!

For this week’s writing prompt make a list of the projects you would like to complete by this time next year.

Don’t worry if some of them seem out of reach at the moment. Write them down anyway. Break them down into easy steps and then take the first one.

Make a commitment to write every day, send your work out and don’t allow anyone to put you off. You will lose nothing by trying.

Good luck and let me know how you get on.

Writing Prompt – Thursday 24th December – Christmas Eve

Best wishes to all of you for Christmas and for a happy, healthy and creative 2021.

If you have a few minutes over Christmas to do some writing then think about your own life’s version of ‘A Christmas Carol.’

Christmas Past

Christmas Present

Christmas Yet to Come

Have some fun with it!

Writing Prompt – Thursday 24th December – Christmas Eve

Best wishes to all of you for a Merry Christmas.

If you have a few minutes to do some writing over the next few days – then think about your own life’s version of ‘A Christmas Carol.’

Christmas Past

Christmas Present

Christmas Yet to Come

Can you create a series of flash fiction stories from this?


New Publication – Beyond the Grapevine – research fragments and writing exercises

The book will be available on Amazon at £1.99 for Kindle and £5 Paperback.

It includes articles previously published in a local magazine called ‘Grapevine’ and creative exercises for writers.

The articles I have been submitting to this magazine since 2018 are usually linked to subjects I am researching for novels and short stories. For the last two years, I have run a writing competition with every issue and awarded a small prize to the winner.


What’s the story?

This is a mini competition I’m running with poet and artist Joy Thomas.  (This has also been posted on Facebook). We would like you to look at the painting, give it a title and write a piece of flash fiction (not more than 200 words including the title). The entries will be judged by me.  The winner will receive the painting as their prize (or the choice of a painting in Joy’s shop at www.facebook.com/artbyjoysandwiththomas). The winner will be published on Facebook and on this website. They will also receive a surprise gift from me. The closing date for entries is Monday 3rd August 2020. Please rest assured no details or email addresses will be shared, all information will be kept strictly confidential. We look forward to hearing from you and reading your entries.


Workshops – Number 8 Community Arts Centre

Due to the Coronavirus outbreak, I have cancelled my workshops on 3rd April and 1st May. There is a good chance that the workshop in June won’t run either.

Please check this website for details and/or contact me by email at sue.r.johnson@outlook.com for further information.

In the meantime, I will be posting regular writing prompts and quotes on this website and on social media.

Treat this as an opportunity to get that novel written. Make a list of the creative projects you would like to complete in the next three years – and make a start on one of them now.

Try the following prompt and see where it takes you:

‘She’d been told not to go near the empty house…’


Think Positive – Get Creative

We are going through difficult times. It is very easy to get drawn into a spiral of panic, especially when faced with social isolation, empty supermarket shelves and conflicting news reports.

Try to look on this as a time for achieving something different with your creative work.

Aim to do three of the following each day:

  1. Step away from social media and news reports for a couple of hours. Switch off your phone.
  2. Devise a short exercise routine – particularly if you are spending more time on the computer.
  3. Read a poem a day.
  4. Contact a friend by phone or email.
  5. Meditate or do a short visualisation.
  6. Write! Release frustrations onto the page. Take a small step with a new project.
  7. Give yourself a small treat every day.
  8. Think of three things you’re grateful for.
  9. Spend a few minutes outside. Focus on the clouds, a flower or a bird. Breathe deeply.
  10. Listen to a piece of music. Close your eyes.