These 52 weeks of creative writing prompts for journaling, art or music will unlock your creativity. The free journal will guide you. Take the prompts and use them however you wish.Home » TeacherWriter.co Blog and News » Teaching Writing »
Do you love a challenge? Do you love all the things that unlock your creativity?
I happen to be an easy target for personal challenges. I also gravitate toward things that put me in touch with my muse.
One year I entered the 52 Hike Challenge, another year the 52 Book Challenge. I’ve entered 30 Day Abs challenges and 30 Day Squat challenges. It’s too bad someone doesn’t start a 30 Day Chocolate challenge. I’d be all over that!
How Do You Feel About Creative Writing Prompts?
Writing is one of the loves and joys of my life. It gives me a sense of balance and calmness. It could be a simple gratitude list, a journal about what happened yesterday, or a letter to a friend. One thing I love about writing is it opens up thoughts and memories I didn’t know were there, and sometimes those thoughts and memories are surprising.
For others, painting, drawing, music, or food can be the love and joy of their lives. I recently discovered the Pieologist on social media. She creates art out of pies. Today as I was watching her create a pie, it had a bright orange sun on it. Therefore, the word “orange” made its way into the list of prompts.
Writing can seem like a chore to some people. I understand that. Everyone has a different, and perhaps persnickety, muse. Staring at the blank page or screen, wondering what to write about can be a buzz killer. One trick I found to overcome this stodginess is to write, “I don’t know what to write about today.” Once the pen or keyboard starts moving, the words begin to flow.
Using a Mind Map With the Creative Writing Prompts
To bring back some of the joy in writing, as well as the joy in teaching writing, I’ve come up with a list of 52 prompts for writing. Most of them are only one word, though they have multiple meanings and uses. However, all of them will bring something different to mind for each person. Using a mind-map to help me think of different aspects of each word. After I’ve explored and defined what it means to me, I’ll choose one word theme to use.
There’s a mind map in the journal to help surface new ideas and connections.
Take for example, orange. Is it the color orange? It could be the fruit. What if it reminds you of the glow around an annular eclipse? Or perhaps it brings to mind a field of California poppies where you had a picnic with someone you care deeply about. For the Pieologist, it was a bright sunny orb on her pie.
How about word number 38, shine? The first thing that comes to my mind is the chore of shining silverware before a holiday meal. I usually do a terrible job and we just eat with tarnished silverware. Or perhaps you think of the expression, “Shine me on?”
I have memories of shining my father’s shoes for him. It was one of my chores as a child. As you can see, the word shine has some connotations for me that are personal and quite different from anyone else’s. You didn’t have to shine your dad’s shoes, did you? If you did, we have something in common.
Maybe for you, the word shine is positive. Shine like a star. The sun is shining. Shine a light on a subject.
More Ways to Use the 52 Weeks of Prompts
Any one of these 52 prompts can be used in multiple ways.
They can be used for artwork. Paint or draw a picture of word 37, forest. See what the word forest evokes for you. Word 52, the letter V, might reveal itself as pop art.
The prompts are designed to open the doors of creativity, in whatever form it speaks to you. However you express your creativity, use them as a starting point in writing, painting, drawing, music, photography, textile creations, clay sculptures, whatever you love to do and whatever brings you joy.
Word 43, boat, brings to mind the novel The Life of Pi, in which a boy and a tiger are drifting in a boat in the middle of the ocean. Murder on the Orient Express by Agatha Christie fits right in with word 44, train. What do the words boat and train bring to mind for you?
Your journal can be as messy or as beautiful as you like. Mine is messy. I scratch words out, scribble in the margins, bleed highlighter across sections to draw my eyes back to a particular phrase. The pages have explosions of color because I can never seem to stick with one color of ink.
If you prefer digital, do that. For me it depends on the day and my mood.
If you’re a teacher, you can use these prompts with your students. One per week is all you need. Or use these prompts for yourself and your own private journaling. These work well as a warmup in a writing group, after which there might be a nice conversation about the differences people perceive the prompts. The same goes for writing clubs, photography classes, and art classes.
Do whatever feels right for you. Are you seeing a theme here?
The 52 Weeks of Prompts Journal for Creatives
There’s no need to use these in any particular order. If one creates a spark in your mind or heart, go with it. These are designed to give you enough weekly prompts for a year, but not to confine you to a designated regimen.
You can download the journal which includes the choice board of words from the Member Vault. It includes room to put in the date. Once you’ve finished with a prompt, you can give a star rating, if you’d like.
There’s also a sketch of a mind map with the prompts. If it works for you, terrific. If not, don’t use it.
Last of all, I included some journal writing pages. You can print them out if you have the PDF version. You never need to worry about how much ink you’re using. The HP Instant Ink program starts as low as $1.49 per month for your color or black and white printer ink needs.
If you want to type right in the pages, there’s a Powerpoint version available. You can download either or both from the Member Vault page of this website.
The List of 52 Weeks of Prompts
Here we begin our journey of creativity and writing together. Remember, these can be creative writing prompts, or prompts for any other type of art, music, and more.
- The letter V
Final Thoughts About the 52 Weeks Prompts Challenge
Please share your creative creations in the comments if you feel comfortable doing so. You could also share them on your social media, using the tag, #52weekprompts2024. You can find me on Threads, Instagram, and Pinterest as @teacherwriterco.
If you’d like to add more creative writing prompts, please do so in the comments! It’s always wonderful to find more.
If you’re joining this challenge and it’s 2025 or later, no worries! You can use these prompts forever. I plan on creating a new challenge next year, which is why I included the year tag in the hashtag. You can use any prompt, any time, any year.
Let’s see what these #52weekprompts2024 brings. One word a week. I hope these help to unlock your creativity. Meanwhile, I’ll get to work on a 30 Day Chocolate Challenge. Snickers anyone?
Where to Find More Writing Prompts
If you’re looking for writing prompts, this blog is a good place to be.
- Find more than 52 journal entry starters for the classroom, all organized by topic.
- Each month I blog about daily writing prompts based on the National Days calendars.
- Writing prompts for opinion writing in the classroom will help you teach this skill.
- The Powerful Connection Between the Science of Reading and Teaching Writing shows how the two skills can build off each other.