This page will provide those seeking inspiration with a few of our ideas. These are non-mandatory prompts; you can opt to submit your results to us for publication if you wish.
If you would like to generously suggest some prompts for us to share, please email us at melancholyhyperbole at gmail with the subject line “Prompts.” No attachments will be opened. Thank you!
# Put a playlist on random. Pick the first song that comes up and then write a persona poem from the perspective of someone you care about as if they are listening to the song.
# Take an actor/actress who intrigues you and write them into your poem; make them do something strange or compelling.
# Open a book to a random page. Pick the most interesting word you see on that page and write a poem in which you use the word five times.
# Watch a commercial. Write down words and phrases from it and then write a poem twisting those words and phrases to mean something else.
# Ask the person nearest to you to name a month. Think about the month they’ve chosen and write about the most emotional or significant thing you can recall ever happening to you during that month.
# Think of all the career paths you wanted to follow when you were a child. Choose one (a realistic one) and then look up someone who actually followed that path and write a poem correlating and/or contrasting your life with theirs.
# Write about the last time you smelled incense.
# Write about the most surprising thing to ever stir a sense of passion in you.
# What would you say to your favorite literary character? We’re not saying we have a thing for Dolores Haze or Holden Caulfield or that we might be tempted to publish a poem which made reference to one of them…you know. Just saying.
# What would you say to your favorite author?
# Use this quote (without including it in your work, or repeating it, obviously) as inspiration for a poem: “I find a frightful compulsion towards truth these days. And the truth is, I don’t know.” —John le Carré