Writing Prompts for October 2017

Writing Prompts for October 2017

October is my favourite month. I love the vibrant colours in the trees, the cold nights, the morning fog, the smell of wet leaves … you get the idea. November is mostly grey, black, and white, but October has nature’s prettiest palette.

For many of you, this is also the run-up month to NaNoWriMo when you do the planning, researching, and organizing before the clock hits 12:01 on the morning of November 1st.  I’m considering taking on the challenge this year, but I’ll be doing a lot of serious thinking before I sign up–and I need a good story idea, too! Not bad things to be thinking about this month. If you’re looking for inspiration for NaNo, or just your everyday writing, I hope the following prompts will help.

Use one, some, or all of the words in one of these groups to create a story or poem.

  • Stool, umbrella, morning, lake, green, breeze
  • Couple, hat, but, bag, lost, rain, red
  • Necklace, black, road sky, jewel, blue
  • Rock, stain, rattle, whisper, drag, black, old
  • Rush, anxious, seldom, clasp, limp, sigh, yellow

See if you can think of a story to go with one of these opening lines.

  • Helen searched the crowd for one face.
  • Henry really was a bookworm.
  • We smelled them before we saw them.
  • The man adjusted his backpack and slipped into the alley.
  • Stones dug into my thin shoes.
  • Birkenstock’s and a kilt. Henry certainly was original.
  • “Did I say that out loud?” Helen’s face turned red and she tried to laugh.
  • Henry crept back into the tent. No one had missed him.
  • I’m sure we turn left here.
  • When it comes to spotting liars, my dog is way better at it than I am.

Here are some titles that might inspire a story or poem.

The Blue Tent, XRT, White Rabbit, A Walk in the Shade, Wonder and the Yellow Balloon, Don’t Be Late, Keeping the Faith, Capricorn, Keeper Creek, The Cyclist, Black Shoes and White Socks, Anger Mismanagement, The Crown, Weybridge.

Here are some dialogue excerpts. Choose one group and see if you can create a scene around it.

  • Look over there!
  • Where?
  • Too late.
  • What was it?
  • Big.


  • I think Henry likes you.
  • I think you’re crazy.
  • So, I guess you like him, too.
  • Again–you’re crazy.


  • Why is Helen so angry?
  • Do you have to ask?
  • Nope. I have to leave.


  • When will you call?
  • I can’t say.
  • Can’t or won’t?


  • Do you have the key?
  • I thought you did!

Hope you have a writerly October!

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