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Funny Essay Prompts

I started blogging at Pecked To Death By Chickens about 5 months ago writing mostly about minor annoyances and how I deal with them. I always like to add some funny to my writing because I want people to enjoy reading it, and I know that personally, I am more likely to  something if I am amused.  My husband likes to point out regularly that there is no one who laughs at my jokes more than I do, so my blog is also for me to read back over and laugh at, even if no one else is laughing.  Although I come up with most of my topics, sometimes I look for inspiration elsewhere.  There are some great blog prompts that can be found in Blogher’s NaBloPloMo and the monthly SITS list among other places.  While I definitely read all of these, I usually only pull a few to consider because there are lots that are to serious for me (recipes, crafts, dramatic topics etc.).  Since many of my followers are other bloggers, I have come up with my own list of blog prompts for those of you looking specifically for something to stretch, test or overwork your funny bone:

1.  Your worst DIY disaster(s) – Explain your Pinterest-ing gone wrong – photos please!

2.  What would be on the mix tape of your life?  Embarrassing boy band confessions? One Hit Wonders?  Show Tunes? Bring it!

3.  What’s In your bag? – One of the celebrity rags does this with celebrities and it is always a slew of well thought out product placements and cute stuff.  I’m sure if normal people did this it could be much more fun!

4.  Weirdest thing(s) you have found on your person — If you are looking for some inspiration for this one, check out one of my favorite posts from Outmanned Mommy:  My Boobs Are Full Of Surprises

5.  If ___ Were Kardashians… — You can pretty much explain any phenomenon by way of Kardashians.  Here is an example:  If Major Social Media Sites Had Kardashian Personalities, Which Would They Be?

6.  Analysis of your worst school photo(s) – Your readers would love to see your braced up little face, Ogilvie home perm and double chin.  Extra points for head gear.

7. Funniest thing that has ever happened to you at a job – This is a question I always ask professionals I meet: eye dr., servers, hairdressers etc.  People have great stories and I have my own from way back in the days of the concert pavillion, the front desk and of course retail!

8.  Giving birth saga – I have yet to meet anyone who doesn’t have an crazy story about giving birth.  So maybe you didn’t push out your kid in a taxi on the way to the hospital, I bet there is still a great story there somewhere!

9.  Infomercial weaknesses – This is a topic that is ripe with humor.  Tell us about something you purchased from tv.  How did they sell you and what was it like when you got it home.

10.  Wardrobe malfunctions – How can this topic not be funny?  From nip slips to unexpected wind gusts, share your best/worst wardrobe malfunctions or those you have witnessed.

11.  Describe your relationship with your pants – I thought of this one because I read a suggested prompt “Describe your realtionship with your paREnts” incorrectly and pondered my relationship with my pants for some time.  From trying to fit into skinny jeans to mom jeans to yoga pants, there is a lot of depth in a woman’s relationship with her pants!

12.  Post-Baby body humor – I hate this term and am thinking about how to address it in a future post.  Please do it so I can just laugh at yours and skip writing it myself.  Thanks.

13.  Your ‘friends in your head’ – I am a big Wendy Williams fan, and she always refers to celebrities she feels an immaginary bond with as ‘friends in my head’.  For me I am friends with all of the QVC hosts/hostesses, Ryan Seacrest, Reese Witherspoon (although we are a little on the outs since the drunken incident), and Lucy Liu among others and I’d love to share how we pretend hang out.

14.  Bird Poop – Everyone has a bird poop story.  If you think you don’t, think about it for a minute.  It will come to you.

15.  The story of how you lost your temper – If you a confrontational, this won’t be any good, but if you are like me and avoid confrontation at all costs, the few and far between times you go off on someone are typically hilarious in hindsight.  For me these include a nurse trying (and trying…and trying) to give me an IV and a punk kid who set up an art shop in my suite without permission when I was a receptionist…maybe a few others.

16.  Kids quotes – Kids are hilarious.  If yours are between maybe 2.5 and 7, they probably say something hilarious every day.  Write it down for a week and share.

17.  Spoiled Food – Most of us have a few stories about food you forgot about and found when it was too late.  Tell us about how it was discovered, the scene and the aftermath.  For me is was potatoes on a dark top shelf months after purchase.  Oh. God.

18.  Anonymous Quote: “The best way to lie is to tell the truth…carefully edited truth – Tell us about carefully edited truths you have told

19.  If you could embody Olivia Pope (Scandal) or Jack Bauer (24) for a day, give us a play by play –I would love be a major bad ass SAHM for just one day!

20. Being hit on – This rarely happens to me (not even when I was single), but I’m sure that some of you have more material to pull from.  I do have a story about a hot female waitress who hit on me when I was out with a bunch of guy friends who were drooling all over her.  They were very angry at me for not turning gay immediately.  Good times…stay tuned.

21.  Verbal pet peeves – I love hearing about other people’s verbal pet peeves.  For example, the use of the word ‘stool’ in any context, saying ‘irregardless’ instead of ‘regardless’ or a coworker who used to say ‘its not rocket scientist stuff’ instead of ‘its not rocket science’ when on the phone with customers explaining the product we sold — all my verbal pet peeves!

22.  A list of rules or does and dont’s for your children to follow in public places – Mine would start with with “DON’T assume every human you see works at the establishment and start to request things accordingly” and it would contain a special section for “Lick only the following…”

If you are a blogger and end up using any of these, let me know.  I will be sure to read and share it on Facebook and Twitter!

Are your so-called “creative” writing exercises starting to seem a little mundane? Spice it up with these outside-the-box writing ideas and prompts…

      1.  Explain why the chicken crossed the road.

Is the chicken fleeing the alien invasion? Leaving farm life behind in favor of a more sophisticated urban atmosphere? Headed for breast reduction surgery? Going out for cocktails? Have fun with it.

      2.  Describe a memorable experience from the perspective of your pet.

What does the family pet think when you strap a tree to the roof of your car and drag multitudinous boxes from the attic down to decorate for the holidays? How might they interpret the addition of a new baby to the family? Memorable doesn’t have to be happy, either. Think natural disaster, or even renovation gone bad… I hate it when there’s drywall dust on my paws!

      3.  Refuse to accept one million dollars.

A far different take than writing ideas that involve the common fantasy of falling into money, under what conditions would you refuse such a windfall?

      4.  Prove you’re not crazy.

This is one of the more entertaining writing ideas to spur creativity: if you were carted off in a straightjacket to the looney bin tomorrow morning, how would you prove your sanity? What are you accused of to land you there? Are you truly only crazy if you say you’re not?

      5.  Someone leaves the bathroom with toilet paper hanging out of their pants.

This is one of the best writing ideas for embracing your inner immaturity. Don’t hold back!

      6.  Suddenly everyone in the world can read minds.

Would your relationships survive? What do you learn about the kind of person you are and how does it change the way you view those around you? How does the world deal, as individuals and as a whole? And if you could take a pill to prevent the ability, would you? Discuss.

       7.  If you could go back in time and alter one event in your life, what would it be?

Describe the event and the effect it has had on your present day situation.

       8.  A day in the life of a pencil.

Copious notes. A worn-out eraser. The sharpener. A teenager with a nibbling fetish. Pencil fights (gasp!). How could that possibly be boring? Don’t be afraid to embrace other common, inanimate objects for further writing ideas as well.

 9.  You can “download” various new skills into your brain, but you can choose only three.

What three skills would be most important to you? Coping mechanisms? Self-defense? Cooking? Medical skills? Dance? Crocheting?

       10.  The pharmaceutical industry invents a pill that eliminates your need for sleep without negative side effects. What do you and others do with the extra time?

Spend it with your family? Work another 40 hours a week? Spend the time Googling or poring over social media posts? Is there truly ever enough time?

Still Stuck?

Writer’s block stinks. But you can get past it with a little effort – though it might not be the effort you had imagined. Try out these additional strategies:

  • Stop trying. Trying to force your way through writer’s block is like waiting for a pot of water to boil. Engage your brain in any other creative, non-writing activity, whether it be sidewalk chalk with your kid or looking up dance tutorials on YouTube, and writing ideas are sure to come.
  • Escape your usual scene. Monotony is the great murderer of creativity. Get out of the house and go somewhere new!
  • Work it out. Exercise is a great way to boost endorphins and relax a taxed mind, allowing creative to flow again.
  • Disconnect. Opt out of being jacked-in, eliminating the distractions of phones and other devices.
  • Go with a pro. If you still can’t come up with any writing ideas, private lessons with an experienced author or writing tutor can help get you out of the slump – and boost your writing skills at the same time!

Banish boring writing exercises, lose the lackluster writing ideas, and start having a little fun with your writing today. Fun, clever, quirky ideas like the ones above are a great way to improve your writing skills and get those creative juices flowing. Good luck!

 

Photo by Sam Wolff

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