Writing Prompts that Don’t Make Me Cringe (Hopefully)

First off, if you’re actually on my blog, you’ll see a new feature I added at the right, which is WORKS IN PROGRESS! This is a little psychological experiment I’m performing on myself. I figure if I track my progress for the whole world to see, it’ll make me write more. Even if no one looks at it, I can pretend that someone is and berates me for how poorly I’m doing. I’ll update it once a week, or at least that’s the plan. And if one of you does want to actually berate me, drop me an email or comment on a post. I won’t bite.

I’ve been meaning to post this for a while but kept getting sidetracked with other things, like how depressing life can get and other quite serious posts that probably didn’t need to happen. But you’ll all forgive me because you’re nice. So here’s a not-serious post, at least not emotionally speaking.

I’m always looking for new ways to spit out words on a piece of paper or word processor (I feel weird saying that, like a technology ignorant person, or non-committal how-to book.) because you have to keep your creative juices flowing, or so they tell me. I once tried writing prompts but didn’t like them. They were too narrow of a focus, making me work on things I didn’t want to work on. Come to think of it,  that might be why I should do them. Setting that aside for a moment, I came up with a new way to keep the ideas flowing! It hit me as I glanced over at a YouTube K-pop playlist I had running as I worked. If you’ve ever seen a K-pop music video, you’ll know how insane they can be. A lot of them have dramatic storylines, and if you don’t understand what they’re saying (like me!) except for the occasional “I love you” and “please,” you infer as much as you can from the visuals. So here’s what I thought. Use a music video as my writing prompt! This is probably not a new concept, but I was quite pleased with myself when I thought of it. Don’t ruin it for me.

Here’s my plan: 1) Watch a music video from any K-pop group; 2) Give myself fifteen minutes to do a freewrite of whatever (a story for the video, what it reminds me of, backstory for a character, continuation of story etc.). I’m hoping this way I’ll come up with new ideas and think of things that never occurred to me before. If nothing else, it’ll be a good excuse to listen to K-pop (again). Not that I need an excuse. I have no idea if this will actually work, but it seems a whole lot more pleasant to me than reading a few lines. I do understand the point of written writing prompts, but I don’t like feeling confined. If I want to get really fancy, I could even say before I watch the video, “Alright, Self. Let’s focus on point of view today.” Or maybe, “What if the girl said, ‘yes’ instead?” You see how I can change it up?

What do you think? I think I’ll do this once or twice a week and whenever my creativity seems to be dried up like day-old tea leaves. Get excited guys! This could be amazing. My first music video prompt will be Super Junior’s new single “Mamacita” because it’s one of the catchiest songs ever.

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