Passed along by Montana from Writer's Digest--writersdigest.com/prompts:
The Terrorist Attack: The snow storm across the nation shut down many businesses and people went home early. The business where you work had closed for two days. Although you turned off the computer before going home, when you returned to work, your computer had been very active while you were away—plotting a terrorist attack. You now find yourself tasked with stopping the attack.
There's Something You Need to Know About That Night: You’re searching through your closet and find an old stuffed animal or doll from your childhood. It starts to bring back a warm memory of a specific night that’s near and dear to your heart. Suddenly, your stuffed companion begins to talk and says, “There’s something you need to know about that night.” Write this scene.
What Happened to Your Pants? Pretend you are a recovering alcoholic who falls off the wagon while attending your high school reunion. Start your story with “I hadn’t had a drink in nearly 10 years” and end it with “If only I could remember where I left my pants.”
A Suicide Note: You are helping out at a charitable center by organizing donated items. When searching through an old suitcase, you find a suicide note dated six months prior. What’s peculiar is that you know the person. What’s even more peculiar is that the person is still alive. Write the story about what happens when you pay that person a visit and ask him or her about the note.
You Are the Arch Nemesis: A movie hero steps out of your television and proclaims that you are his/her arch-nemesis. Write about what happens.
From the ToastedCheese.com archives (April 2012): Sorry about the quantity. I culled some but it was hard to choose.
Write about a map (real or metaphorical).
The gray tones of winter gave way to a gentle tide of green.
A restaurant with its own herb garden.
The glint of light on broken glass
He considered a woman running barefoot sexy.
Use the following words: know, roof, quick, crowd, discarded
Write about a childhood nightmare.
Write about an increase in temperature.
She enjoyed the sensation of fear.
A backpack tucked underneath an azalea bush.
A character with an unusual style of beard/mustache.
A freshly sharpened pencil.
Use the following words: flakes, floor, future, front, filled
Write about two or more people doing something in unison.
Incorporate a famous quote from a movie or TV show.
A character with poor table manners.
A character must make a choice. Write the scene two different ways.
Start with the lyrics to a popular song & turn them into a story.
Find a nice place to sit & think about your WIP for 15-30 min. Then write!.
Use the following five words: repeat, through, college, kamikaze, breeze.
Fill in the blanks: "Never ______ with a _____".
Use the phrase (thx Neil Gaiman) "Events are cowards. They run in packs."
Write the same scene in 1st, 2nd & 3rd person.
The perfect day job for a writer is...
Start with a line from a favorite poem.
Imagine winning a writing award. Outline the steps you'll take to get there.
Record yourself reading your work aloud. Listen to it, then revise.
Use the following words: absorb, lines, welcoming, anger, bends
Write about creating a monster.
Write about two options that are bad for different reasons.
Go write in an unusual location.