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  • Writer's pictureElise

Writing Prompts to Get You Started #33

Welcome to the place that is dedicated to getting you writing (again?). Maybe you have absolutely no idea where to start but have always wanted to try being a writer. Maybe you want to write the great American novel or you thought you'd write a poem about hidden life of a grain of sand. Maybe you just need a little inspiration to get you started or you find yourself just a little stuck. Maybe you find yourself trying to break out of your comfort zone or mix things up at work. Whatever your reason for landing here, practicing a little creativity can impact your life in ways you didn't expect.

But let's be honest. Creativity is a muscle and it needs exercise to work properly. That's where this series comes in. With any luck, this series will get your creative juices flowing and get you thinking in ways you hadn't before. Throughout the summer, we posted a couple of prompts every week. We cut back a little during the school year but will attempt to post at least one prompt a month. If you are interested in more, not only are there prompt sites online, we also have a prompt booklet you can get from us and enough creative people on staff to maybe come up with an idea you can run with if you come in and ask.


It's National Poetry Month. In the spirit of things, let's wax poetic. We don't need to be Shakespeare, but that doesn't mean we can't get out there and put pen to parchment. Even bad poetry has its place. In fact, it can be fun to write.

According to, there are some ideas you can use to write some truly dreadful verse:

  1. Use simple rhymes without thinking about whether they’re appropriate.

  2. Mix up the order of words so it sounds “arty.”

  3. Use weak modifiers that leave little impression on your readers.

  4. Be hugely literal (metaphor and simile are for losers).

  5. Sprinkle in clichés people have heard a thousand times before.

You might even find that making fun of these concepts within your poem might lead to something truly hilarious.

In an internet search for bad poetry (yes, I did an actual search), I discovered an article showing that we are not alone in our search for a creative outlet. An artificially intelligent (AI) language program, created by the San Francisco-based research firm OpenAI, recently was given a number of famous poems to work off of and created its own bad poetry that was then published as a chapbook under the title Transformer Poetry.

Write as bad a poem as you are capable. I dare you not to have fun doing it. Then write as if you were an AI attempting to create human poetry based off of that bad start.

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