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Hi! My name is Toni and this is my blog on writing prompts. Sometimes inspiration strikes me anywhere, sometimes I badly need a jumpstart. This blog helps with those jumpstarts, when you need a little push. Hopefully the writing prompts open your mind further to new ideas and help encourage you into writing more. A little writing help never hurt!

8 Ways to Overcome Writer's Block

April 22nd 2010 13:14
There it is again -- the brick wall we can't knock down. Mental block happens when we're exhausted, when we're at a dead end, when we're stuck. A simple refresher is all that's needed.


Image by e-magic

My work involves a lot of writing. The following tips work great for me. Here are eight ideas to help you overcome writer's block. Hope this helps get your creative juices flowing too!

1. Take a shower. Water helps cleanse the mind. Being physically refreshed may help shake off that rut you were in to. I find that some great ideas come to me while I'm showering. Maybe it's because I'm not thinking of anything else, just enjoying the water, and then boom! Perhaps the best ideas come when we're not thinking about them. Ideas can be sneaky!

Image by Toni Blay

2. Take a walk. Go for a stroll around the neighborhood. Keep the senses open to what you're experiencing. Perhaps something will strike your attention and inspire you. Sometimes all you need is fresh air too.

Image by MorBCN

3. Nap. Rest those eyes, rest that brain. RECHARGE.

Image by WASABIdesign

4. Brainstorm. Two heads are better than one -- sometimes. With cases of mental block, having a chat with someone else can help get those juices a-flowin' again.

Image by reNET

5. Refer to your Idea Journal. This assumes you have one. If you don't have one, create one! An Idea Journal is precisely that -- a collection of random thoughts and ideas you may have. Jot down stories, quotes. Doodle. Cut out images from magazines and paste them into this notebook. When you're stumped, go through this journal. I carry mine everywhere I go!

6. Do something else! Finish your chores. Play a Facebook game. Play with the baby. Read a book. Feed the dog. Do cartwheels. Run naked through the woods. Okay maybe not that last one. Just get away from wherever you are and do something else. Forget about that piece you can't finish and just put your mind someplace else. Go back to your piece later.

7. Listen to music. Step away from anything in the written form. Put on some songs, close your eyes, and let your thoughts get lost in the music. I find that alternative rock (specifically from the '90s) helps me write better at work, and classical music helps with my creative pieces. Finding out what specific genre helps you makes for a fun experiment.

Image by A.Ddiction

8. Change your writing environment. Getting away from your computer can help get rid of writer's rut, but so can changing your location. New places can provide fresh perspectives. Quiet mornings at a coffee shop near my office works for me.

Image by cobalt123

How do you get rid of writer's block? Share your tips and tricks!

Let It Rain

March 25th 2010 14:20
The sound of rain relaxes me. Maybe it's because I feel my stress being washed away. Maybe because I'm reminded of school getting cancelled because of rains. Maybe it's because it just sounds so cleansing.

I stumbled upon this site called Rainy Mood. Just click on the "Play" button and you're treated to the sound of gentle rain. Instant relaxation. I love it.

It inspires me to write about playing indoors and waiting for the sun to come out. It inspires me to write about wanting to dance and play in the rain, but my Mom wouldn't let me. It inspires me to write about watching the trees and leaves in the garden catch the the raindrops and look so beautiful glistening once the sky has cleared. Oh, maybe I'll write about it about another time. Suddenly I just want to reminisce.

Listen to the gentle rain. What do you remember?

Write on the ref!

September 12th 2009 07:22

Jot-Dry Erase Refrigerator

For those moments in the kitchen when an idea enters your head but you've got no pen or paper around you. How about writing on the ref?

(via Cooking Gadgets)

A rug to inspire

September 8th 2009 06:56
To help get rid of writer's block, what if you surround yourself with items that could encourage you to exercise that imagination a bit more?

Maybe you could take a cue from the kid -- plop belly down on this Happily Ever After rug with your notebook and pen, then let that imagination of yours take center stage. Hopefully your writing will find that happily ever after ending too!

(via Apartment Therapy)

Color My Branches

July 26th 2009 08:52
Think a different kind of writing material will help you get out of writer's block?

Maybe this will help.

Stick Crayons
Stick Crayons

Let us know if it helps with the artist's or writer's block. That's if a kid in your home doesn't get to it first!

via: Nerd Approved. Product details here.

Classical music as a springboard

July 2nd 2008 08:09
Classical music helps fuel the imagination.

I find that listening to classical music helps me in writing. I put on a song, say Attesa by Sarah Brightman, close my eyes, then let images fill my head.

I let my imagination ride the waves of the symphony. Stories begin to take shape eventually and I follow the movie in my mind. When the movie approaches a quiet crescendo, one can imagine a door opening to an unpleasant surprise. A staccato could indicate footsteps of the sneaky ones, or a little boy making his way towards the cookie jar. The combination of sounds makes for a beautiful musical imagery.

It's also a relaxing exercise. Try it!

Amy Tan: Where does creativity hide?

April 25th 2008 02:17

"How do we create something out of nothing?" Amy Tan tells us her story -- how she makes things happen, talks about moral ambiguity and synchrony, and the muse that can keep us going. Wonderful 22 minutes spent.

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Image from USATODAY

Please read me a bedtime story!

Photo from Geeksugar

This is the Bedtime Reading Quilt by Tiago da Fonseca. It's made of several layers that you can turn and tear off as you read. Yep, that's an actual bedtime story printed right there, not just a jumble of words.

Perfect for that bookworm who falls asleep with her nose stuck in a book! *points to self* This also makes a great gift for lovers of words!

If you had a choice, what story would you like to have printed on these sheets?

The Fill-in-the-Blank Story Generator

February 12th 2008 01:59
If you're bored and want to get a kick of out putting a story together, give this website a try:

The Fill-in-the-Blank Story Generator

It's an interesting exercise. This is how mine turned out:

My Story

The strangest thing happened to me about a month ago in math class. I was half asleep when I realized that there was a bad smell somewhere. You have probably had that experience before. I felt nervous and upset, and I knew that soon I would have to go to the bathroom. My friend Josh had called me the previous day, and told me all about Jason's problem with the stray dog that was acting strangely, and I was a little worried about my sanity. Then, all of a sudden, I saw in my mind what I realized was the problem I had ignored, and right then I broke wind! I remembered what my grandfather had told me about a situation like this. It was very important that I not look worried. Very calmly, I spoke a few quiet words to myself and resolved to do something about the situation. Before I knew it, my arms were stuck to my chest, and I told my friend to bring me some clothes. So you see, I really almost died of embarrassment, and I decided I had to tell you all about it.


How did your story go?

You have a message. Brace yourself.

*new message alert*

"Am srry. Its nt wrkng 0ut. Met sum1 @ d'beach n we fll n luv. It bl0wz I knw bt I cudnt hlp it. Hpe to stll b frenz anywyz. Hugz."

What do you think of making major decisions through SMS?

Have you ever joined a blog carnival?

January 17th 2008 00:50
Have you ever joined a blog carnival?

A blog carnival is a collection of blog entries, most of the time under one given theme. While entries are written by a variety of bloggers, links to these entries are collected in a single blog entry by the blog carnival host.

For example, the theme could be "Your Grandmother's Recipes." You are then encouraged to write a blog entry within that theme. You can write a poem about your granny's apple pie, post a picture of her minestrone, write about your frustrations about not getting her passion for cooking, or just plain post a recipe or two. The format would depend on what that particular blog carnival's guidelines are.

There are a LOT of blog carnivals around. It is a great opportunity to write and to connect with others who share the same interest in the theme. If you're a wine lover, you can join a wine blog carnival and learn a new thing or two from fellow wine lovers. You know the old saying - birds of the same feather flock together. It's a great venue to meet up with bloggers who share your interests.

Here are some examples of blog carnival announcements (and all these are ongoing):

Festival of Frugality - A carnival on frugality where you can share your tips on saving, being thrifty and the like
Carnival about homeschooling - Share your ideas and thoughts on homeschooling
Mini Pie Revolution - a carnival that aims to launch on Valentine's Day with entries on the sweetest tarts
Game Night Food - Share your recipes for a fun-filled and stress-free game night
If books were food, what would they taste like? - This is a carnival I started in my home & living blog. For bookworms who are foodies and foodies who are bookworms.

Here are some examples of rounded-up blog carnivals:

The 106th Festival of Frugality- frugality all the way
The Marriage Proposals Blog Carnival Round-Up - also one of my own, a collection of proposal stories and ideas
LP22: Rice to the Challenge - a round-up of rice recipes

It's easy to host and join one. Why not try both? They're great ways to jumpstart your writing and connecting with those who share your interests.

So, will I be seeing you at any blog carnivals soon?

What do you write best with?

January 10th 2008 00:11
What do you write best with?

What do you write best with?

Are you the classic type? Do words and ideas flow more smoothly when you are holding a pen or a newly sharpened pencil? Do you like the sound of scribbling, the sound of lead on paper?

Or do you like the clicking of keys against paper? Does your typewriter whiskyou to older times, when there was no backspace key, when the appearance of words were dictated not only by your mind but by the ink on a ribbon?

Or do you prefer moving your fingers across a keyboard, watching letters and numbers appear on a screen?

Finding that writing tool that helps you most can help you churn out more ideas. When you're at home with your pencil, the familiarity perhaps helps you get in your zone faster.

So, tell us, what do you write best with?

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