You must log in or register to comment.

AutoModerator t1_iy539ly wrote

Welcome to the Prompt! All top-level comments must be a story or poem. Reply here for other comments.


>* Stories at least 100 words. Poems, 30 but include "[Poem]" >* Responses don't have to fulfill every detail >* See Reality Fiction and Simple Prompts for stricter titles >* Be civil in any feedback and follow the rules

🆕 New Here? ✏ Writing Help? 📢 News 💬 Discord

I am a bot, and this action was performed automatically. Please contact the moderators of this subreddit if you have any questions or concerns.


gaborrero t1_iy5nlrw wrote

I sat with my phone, proud of myself, when I received a notification. A response to my prompt!? Already!?

Nope. Turns out, it was a message from the mods of the WritingPrompts subreddit.

>Stop submitting superhero and alien prompts. They're just as bad as the dark lord ones, and you're spamming. Thanks! -- Mods at WritingPrompts

I felt the color drain from my face. No aliens? No superheroes? What prompts were left? Nothing that I would read, certainly.

A few taps on my phone later, I found myself satisfied with my prompt, and submitted it. Let's see if the mods think I'm not creative, now!

[WP] An r/WritingPrompts user struggles to write a prompt that isn’t about superheroes or aliens.


FlightCapableFelon t1_iy5psg4 wrote

It's easy to make a prompt for heroes and extraterrestrials. Comic books are well known for delving deeply into bizarre and strange scenarios after all, leaving plenty of inspiration. But after seeing so much of the fantastic, the impossible, its spectacle starts to fade. The whole thing starts to feel more lazy than interesting. Labels of Hero, Villain, Demon King, etc, all convenient check marks to let an author skip over details of who characters are so they can fit everything in nice little 500 word posts.

I consider putting up a prompt for more slice of life focus into those settings, but even that's overdone now. In truth, as nice as it can be to view those characters in such a way, more often they're robbed of gravitas as an author attempts to be witty. A Dark Lord getting coffee is amusingly absurdist the first time, but rendering them another person loses part of the presence that makes such characters intimidating in the first place.

If I just wanted to farm points then sure, what's it matter if the idea feels trite to me? Clearly the rest of the sub doesn't agree, and appealing to those who've yet to grow sick of it all can be nice. But that's not a good road to go down, tying my love of the written word to the approval of countless strangers. Binding my self worth to whether or not a work gets lots of clicks and engagement is more likely to kill my enjoyment of the hobby than anything else.

Perhaps something more grounded? I've enjoyed fantastical works on pre-industrial societies, highlighting the difficulties in making even the simplest building blocks of civilization. The magic of transportation a tamed horse can give and how incredible such a beast is up close even in a world with far more bizarre creatures. Or maybe something on ancient conflict, with emphasis on the mindgames that were so critical there. It was a rare battle that didn't end in retreat after all, whichever side lost their nerve and turned from marching soldiers to a terrified mob first.

Yet even as I think of it, I know I won't write it down. Because wadding through this sea of samey ideas only reminds me of what I'm using it to avoid. Crafting my own works, facing the misery of trying to bind a grand vision into corporeal form and only making a mess.

So I close Reddit. Ignore the highlight reels of more experienced or talented writers, and once again slam my head into the consistent failures that make up the learning process of any field.


GhostOfNaturEstuary t1_iy61vni wrote

A superhero amongst aliens yet alienated from the worlds of superhero’s, Celeste was born in the belly of moon rock known as Lullabies Litter. A crater nestled on the dark side of the crescent, and a sanctuary from spaces cosmic conflicts, Lullabies Litter was a home to magical monsters and benevolent beasts in an Eden no God could foresee.

What do you call a being outcast from a world of hero’s and so foreign to a galaxy of aliens that the Gods themselves continuously question its very existence? A wonderful mystery for sure!

She awoke to a cluster of Jelly Stars dancing halos above her head. These butterflies of space, they swam and flew reveries around her face. Her solar like eyes beamed bright with delight, as she yawned back to sleep to for the night.

Day dawned through the shade of a nurseries room, with a remaining fade of the moon tinting the sky framed by window. Beneath the sill a crib held a dreaming Celeste, a mobile spun overhead with butterflies and jellyfish surfing the solar system. A traveler of Dreams they call her. Just a TOD.


liltooclinical t1_iy675ro wrote

"What is this nonsense!?" Dana just kept scrolling, and scrolling, and scrolling. "Some of these are so bad I could change 'fae' to 'The Hamburglar' and it might even be ironically funny but I'd probably want to puke writing it."

"Doesn't anyone want to live in the real world anymore?" She put her phone down and tried looking out the window again. Unconsciously she grabbed her phone, went through her ridiculously complicated unlocking process, and started scrolling again. She scolded herself. The inspiration wasn't coming and it certainly wasn't going to be found here today.

"No," she answered her own question, "no they don't. Have I seen the real world lately? It sucks!"

Just then, there was notification. Her phone buzzing in her hands startled her. "No it doesn't! Come out with me tonight and I promise you'll have your inspiration!"

No name, just a number.

She stared incredulously at her phone. Without really thinking she wrote back, "Where are we going?"

"To Hell if we don't change our sinnin' ways!" a loud voice boomed behind her. Dana shrieked and reflexively tossed her phone into the air. She tumbled from her cheap office chair before her dormitory desk. Looking up she saw her roommate was doubled-over, laughing and struggling to breathe.

"Do you--" Faith wheezed, struggling to speak through heavy breaths and bouts of giggling, "do you always talk to yourself when you're alone?"

"Screw you!" Dana hissed. "Do you have something real you want to say or are you just here to bother me?"

"For real, the world doesn't suck! Come out with me and my friends tonight and we'll show you!"

"Where we going?"

"No for real, we're going to Hell."


Iamhuntingwerewolves t1_iy7lrqu wrote

"A world without creativity" was the newspaper headline. As you read through the article it was so factual, and lacked any such flair and dramatics that have become the norm, even in the news. The article read like a thesis, purely factual, with statements based on evidence and conclusions from a scientific mind. Not a single piece of unnecessary information was included, nor any inferences or sway of opinion. Evidently the writers block you were suffering from was widespread. On the surface this didn't appear to be of big concern, but that dismissal was short lived. The world was changing moment by moment as politicians no longer had access to the endless stream "creativity" they would use in their reports, posts, media presentations to sway voters to their point of view. Not only the person on view, but their staff and speech writers behind them had no conspiracies or rumours to highlight to back up their unfounded reports, and simply had proven facts to call upon which more often than not provided contrary evidence. Artists of all sorts sat idle without a single muse left in existence to inspire them. Painters could only produce visions of what they saw before them, and film makers could only produce documentaries. The world was rapidly becoming a bleak place as mere conversation became wholly unfulfilling. Interactions between friends became little more than a recounting of an event much like reading the transcript of what had happened purely based on a visual recounting. One writer sat, staring at a blank word document, the cursor flashing on plain white background begging the universe to send him some inspiration about a superhero or alien. This dude was ready for a prompt.


Cuppa_Miki t1_iy843qj wrote

You are an ordinary human, on your way to work when suddenly....suddenly.....a....FUCK. It's no use. There's no prompts to be written about getting a cheeky coffee on the way to the office. There's no inspiration in a Supermarket Meal Deal. The only super worth prompting is the heroic kind. But after five stories about a super villain and hero interacting in an unexpected way, six about aliens finding humans surprising and eight around how amazing I would be if I gained superpowers/was born as alien. I was tapped.

Sure, I could pop on an Avengers film and think about how much shorter the film would be had I been there with my own powers. But I craved more interaction in my wish fulfillment than that. I craved strangers furiously typing on their phones from my bare bones instructions. I craved the notifications. I sighed, let go of any attempt at artistic integrity and started to type again.

'You are a Superhero who just found out their room mate is an alien supervillain, but he always pays his rent on time and is a great cook...'

Now it was six.


Meekoip t1_iy872uz wrote

He watched the man sipping his coffee. He knew he should be writing something witty, with awesome metaphors like the last post he had read. But he had nothing. His paper blank except a speck of dark dust on the corner. He looked up at the man again who took another sip of coffee. He wondered if it were black, or perhaps pumpkin spice. “Dare I go over to him and ask him for a sip? “ he thought to himself. What did he have to lose anyways? He didn’t have any ideas to write. His mind was empty. This was the first original thought he had all day while trying to think. Why not simply act on it and see what happens? He kept staring at The unsuspecting man. Trying to build up the courage to find out how he liked his coffee. He closed his eyes telling himself he could do it. He placed his first foot forward. Then the other. It was easier then he thought. He was now at the man who still didn’t look at him. He bent down taking the cup from his hand, putting the edge of the cup the his mouth and sipping. The world melted away in a collapse of colorful light. He was strapped down to a table. “How did you know how to escape the virtual world that I created DarkStalker!” The multi tentacled space alien asked? “DarkStalker! Thats my name! How did I forgot!” He flexed, bursted from the iron shackles that held him!


EvilNoobHacker t1_iy9dpr0 wrote

"Why am I even doing this."

"Huh?" The writer glanced behind him, to see me, Ben, glowering.

"It's another dumb r/WritingPrompts prompt."


I glowered at him, and back at my screen. The teacher on my Zoom screen talked about the end of the semester, but she didn't notice I was on Reddit. And Honestly? She probably didn't care.

"Well, at least it isn't superheroes or aliens, I guess." I muttered. "Might be able to get some good comedy out of this."

"No, no, man, I don't know who you are." the writer stood back, confused. "In fact, where am I?"

"You're in a study room in the High Library at Elizabethtown College. It's 1:29, and you've just been made up by a bored college freshman in the middle of his english 100 class." I rolled my eyes. "You're a person I made up for a writing prompt because I was bored of talking about things I already know about."

"Like what?"

"Going over logos, pathos, and ethos for the fifth time this semester." I grumbled. "I really just wanted to write something, to be honest. Didn't want to hear about TED talk analysis and research that we went over a month ago."

"No, like, how did you get in my room?" the writer looked around, confused. A tic-tac-toe game was on the whiteboard. I had done it myself, out of sheer boredom.

"This isn't your room, idiot." I repeated. "You're in a study room. I created you 5 minutes ago when I saw this prompt by u/ReadyDude3849 that looked interesting enough to pass 30 minutes before I head off to my ED101 class." I explained. Of course, I wasn't actually explaining. I was just writing out words as if I was

"Wait, so I'm not real?" the writer titled his nonexistent head.

"Nope." I smiled.

"So, what is this all about?" he asked me, technically.

"It's a meta prompt about me struggling not to write about superheroes or aliens, mostly." I said. "The prompt references how the subreddit seems to go through the same aesthetic over and over again, unable to pry itself away from the superheroes and aliens that so many people want to subvert." I wrote down. "Still, I have some issues with the meta prompt, so I wanted to make my own short story."

"Wait, so this is a meta prompt? Aren't those like, the next most common thing behind superheroes and aliens?" the writer looked scrolled through the subreddit.

"I mean, that's true-" I started. "I just don't think the OP realizes how diverse the actual prompts on the site are." I sighed. "Sure, the posts are usually about superheroes or aliens, but the stories themselves are diverse." I finished.

"Huh? What do you mean by diverse?" the writer challenged me.

"Well, good thing you asked that random question. Let me explain." I smiled, and left the class Zoom, as my teacher finished up with the lecture.

"The aesthetics of the prompts aren't always too creative. The ideas we make are normally recycled, but coming from a writer, I think that can sometimes be a good thing." I said, smiling. "The prompts themselves, at least, the aesthetic of the month that we like so much, doesn't really matter. Just looking at all the ideas by themselves lets me come up with whole new worlds, new characters, and even other prompts for other people to explore."

"Like me?" The writer used his nonexistent hand to point at himself.

"Exactly!" I chuckled to myself, as I kept writing. These meta jokes are fun. "Heck, I've even seen prompts exactly like this one at least 3 or 4 times this month, and honestly, I didn't want to write at that time. But now, looking at the prompt, an idea came over me, and because I was bored and had time, I could post it here for everyone to see. If anything is important, I think it's that, at the end of the day, people will read what I write, and have fun. The prompt doesn't matter as much as the story that comes out of it. And seeing stories by great people like u/shalidar13 and u/ApocalypseOwl makes me smile. The stories themselves are creative, and that's what matters. " I switched locations to an actual classroom, where class was soon going to start.

"Wait, where are we now" the writer asked.

"Doesn't matter." I said. "The point is, the creative process often recycles the same ideas, but its how we expand on those ideas that makes it all the better. The stories we produce and enjoy here are all unique. I just like seeing cool people write cool stuff, and that's why I'm here."

"Ok, I get it, your cheesy lecture hit. Still, where are we now? This room is way more bright than before." the writer looked around at all the posters that, honestly, were for young kids. We were in a basic spanish classroom.

"You don't exist anymore." I said.

As I finished writing the prompt, a couple of my friends came to sit down at my table to chat before class started.

I did a quick runthrough of my prompt response, and with a good feeling in my chest, hit "Comment."


EvilNoobHacker t1_iy9dygb wrote

By the way, I mean no hate to OP. Just wanted to make a meta prompt, because, as said before, I was bored in a class that wasn't teaching me anything. My ED101 class is about to start as I type this, hope you all had fun reading it!


FearMeImmortals t1_iyabxx9 wrote

A man is kidnapped and given extraordinary super powers. Turns out, it wasn't a government experiment gone wrong - the villain just wanted an enemy.

No, no, no! Something without superheroes. No matter how cool they may be. They're so overdone - even original ideas seem like tropes now. I've got to come up with something else.

You're out for your daily walk when suddenly you come across an abandoned space ship. You investigate further and discover something shocking... dogs are really aliens!

Okay, that one is unoriginal. I think I've seen the same thing a thousand times, maybe with some details exchanged for others. I mean, come on, aliens? Really? What the hell is wrong with me?

No, I have to come up with something better. Something so original no one will think "typical superhero or alien prompt".

Aliens are invading! They reveal to humanity that all aliens are superheroes and supervillains. They destroyed their old planet fighting - Earth is their new playground.

God, really? Alien superheroes? I swear, it is so hard to come up with prompts now.


That's it!

An r/WritingPrompts user struggles to write a prompt that isn't about superheroes or aliens.

Technically it's still about superheroes and aliens in a way, but at least it's somewhat creative, right?



Unironically love some of the prompts I came up with for this lol. But hope you enjoyed this! It was super fun to write even if short!