Creative Writing Exercises

ook cover - Practical Creative Writing Exercises by Grace Jolliffe illustrating an article about Choosing a book cover creator

Don’t know where to start?

Suffering from writer’s block?

Short of ideas?

Many of us get stuck when faced with the blank page.

But what if you didn’t ever have to face that blank page again?

Creative writing exercises can eliminate those blocks and get your creative juices flowing immediately.


As a writer, I firmly believe in the power of creative writing exercises.

Why? Because this is how I started myself – using random words and phrases to stimulate ideas and get me past that intimidating blank page.

The Power of Exercise

Later I worked with creative writing students of all ages and background and began to devise, develop and tweak my exercises.

From their response, I was able to judge which exercises worked best and I added to my collection over the years.

book cover - Practical Creative Writing Exercises by Grace Jolliffe illustrating an article about writing exercisesMy book, Practical Creative Writing Exercises is the result and I am so happy to be able to say many writers have used the book to great success and I am sure you will too.

The exercises don’t just trigger ideas but are specifically designed to be visual.

Visual exercises help you overcome your mental editor.


Each of us has our own mental editor. The mental editor is frequently triggered when you start something new and creative.

It usually takes the form of a critical voice, plaguing you with nagging doubts about your own ability – the last thing you need when you want to focus on writing a story.

Ultimately, your mental editor can stop you writing. It used to happen to me before I discovered how to switch it off with writing exercises.

Use the exercises in the book and you’ll soon forget you ever had a mental editor.


One of the joys of writing is being in flow. Flow is when you are so focused in on your story that the real world disappears. Time flies, you enjoy your work and the words mount up.

Believe me being in flow is one of the most wonderful creative experiences you can ever have and you can experience this too.

My practical creative writing exercises are visual and beautiful. They are not just one word prompts they are descriptive and carefully designed to help you see the images and ideas in your mind.

Further questions then help you see your story, rather like a movie running through your head as you write.

Buy Practical Creative Writing Exercises now and find that story you always wanted to write.











Join over 3.000 visitors who are receiving our newsletter and get your free creative writing tracker.
We hate spam. Your email address will not be sold or shared with anyone else.

27 Responses to Creative Writing Exercises

  1. Grace March 19, 2014 at 5:32 pm #

    Thanks Stephanie, glad you liked them. Let me know how you get on!

  2. Anthony April 28, 2014 at 1:57 pm #

    I have spent most of this afternoon allowing my mind to wander and creating some really interesting characters/ situations….Thank you for this webpage it was exactly what I needed to motivate and inspire me. From this day forth my mindless scribblings will have a more structured purpose to them, and I am sure, as a result my stories will far better because of it. Merci beaucoup!!!!!

    • Grace April 28, 2014 at 7:17 pm #

      Hi Anthony – it was great to get your comment and I am so glad you found motivation and inspiration from the exercises. Come back soon and tell me how your writing developed – I’d love to know.

  3. Dana Rockwell May 13, 2014 at 11:23 am #

    Amazing read. I’m looking to start a small web series or a writing website to expand on my writing ideas and to practice creative writing.

    • Grace May 13, 2014 at 11:55 am #

      Thanks Dana, best of luck with your writing. Keep in touch and let me know how it goes for you.
      All the best, Grace

  4. Maggie Bears September 8, 2014 at 3:50 am #

    I was trying to look up good exercises for my Creative Writing Club group and after finding this website I realize that I have found some great ones! I can’t wait to use some of these and to get them on this website and writing. Thank you so much for compiling this and sharing it with us. Absolutely amazing!

    • Grace September 8, 2014 at 2:24 pm #

      Hi Maggie, thanks for your comments. I am very glad you found the exercises helpful and hope your group find them helpful also. I am soon going to be bringing out a book of exercises and I think you will find it very useful.
      Best wishes

  5. Jeremy September 11, 2014 at 4:59 pm #

    As someone who wants to make videogames and always loves new ways to strengthen my imagination, I am really thankful that you have put together all of these exercises. I hope through them I can become a more creative writer and bring deep stories to my games. So far I like the abstract and dramatic exercises the best.

    • Grace September 13, 2014 at 9:52 pm #

      Hi Jeremy, thanks for your comments. Keep in touch I would be very interested to hear how you get on with your video games.
      Best wishes,

  6. Daniel September 22, 2014 at 8:06 pm #

    Thanks alot, I found it very useful, because im a student that has an essay tomorrow and my English isnt very good. I just have to tell my friends about this page.
    Thanks A MILLION

    • Grace September 25, 2014 at 6:40 pm #

      I am glad it helped.
      Best of luck with your work.

  7. Subhadra November 4, 2014 at 1:53 am #

    What do you call it when a story just refuses to be picked up from a point? Its like, I get inspired and start writing and if I stop, that’s the end of it! I don’t feel inspired same way and the story feels offended if i resume it half-assed. It is so frustrating. Do you have any help for hopeless people like me?

    • Grace November 4, 2014 at 10:56 am #

      Hi Subhadra,
      This is a problem for a lot of writers also. It is always easier to stay fresh and inspired at the start of a story. The problems start when that flush of enthusiasm fades a little.
      There are two things you can try. First always end your writing session at a point where you are sure you know where you going and still feel good. If you know what is going to happen next just make a quick note about it.
      Then when you begin your next writing session you are starting at a high point – not a low.

      The other suggestion I have is to plan your story first – even just few notes. If you have a fairly good idea of where you are going you will find it much easier to keep writing. Remind yourself that a lot of writers get frustrated and that the more you write the easier it will get.
      Best of luck with it and don’t forget to come back and tell me how you get on.

  8. Emm Jay Sopori December 3, 2014 at 9:43 am #

    Thanks a lot…….
    I am always thinking to write but I hesitate to do so. now on finding your website, I got much enthusiastic about writing, I will definitely love to be in touch with you.

    • Grace December 3, 2014 at 12:11 pm #

      Hi Emm Jay,
      Great to hear you are feeling enthusiastic – keep going!
      Best wishes

  9. Karen June 19, 2015 at 2:02 am #

    Hi Grace, we used one of your exercises for our writing group and enjoyed the creativity that it inspired.
    Thank you!

    • Grace June 19, 2015 at 2:40 pm #

      Hi Karen,
      I am so glad it worked and that you and your group enjoyed it.
      Thanks for letting me know – good luck with your writing.

  10. Craig June 19, 2015 at 11:06 am #

    You have an excellent site Grace. Thanks so much for the writing exercises. They really do provide a jump-start for lagging creative energy.

    Kind regards,

    • Grace June 19, 2015 at 2:39 pm #

      Hi Craig,
      Thanks a million for that – warms my heart to hear it. Best of luck with your writing.

  11. Kris Whitestone September 24, 2015 at 11:13 am #

    Another cute lil start out technique:

    Ape the sure hand of the sure master. Step into the shoes of F Scott Fitzgerald, Nabokov, Bulgakov, Hemmingway, Faulkner, Shakespeare (yes, you can!) and spend a few moments imitating their style/s.

    Try on their ways if capturing a scene and emotion:

    Driving through the “green echoes” of Nabokov

    Wear the “Wet hair like a blue daub of paint” of Fitzgerald

    Imagine “A cat of great size that rides the tram by himself” by Bulgakov

    Ask “What may this mean, that thou, dead corpse…?” (Shakespeare).

    Catch the tail of the wind… Let your pictures narrow down into a telling single feature (one or two features, maybe).

    you go to a store. Afterwards, how do you know you have been there? Because you remember every item on every shelf? No, no. And who wants to read that? We all have been to stores. Let’s go to your store. Mine is a foot-aching place with a hospital-white floor of dubiously high polish… etc etc… Whatever becomes important – hone in on that. There is more to be said by saying less.

    “A fire of red roses” (my own).

    “I blathered on and on, as one drunk to another does, telling my tale of a short prude, a tall miser and a well-developed adolescent sylph and her dog of mixed eye color…” (my own again).

    Catch it – and let the reader catch it. That’s all that is necessary. The hard work, when you are beginning to frame a scene is to give the telling feature. Too much is always too much. Words bloat.

    Avoid adjectiving the black, white, fat, short, tall, happy, sad reader who drives a red car with a red steering wheel to their slow death. Drive, plot, mastermind, dear god do it- and keep your readers in suspense.

    Write for yourself, but write like the world is listening. Hook into what they know. Assume they have as much life experience as you.

    And so it ends. Wa laum.

    • Grace September 30, 2015 at 12:44 pm #

      Thanks for this Kris – beautiful quotes and suggestions.
      All the best


  1. Eleven Places to Find Exercises for Your Writing | Karenzo Media Editing & Layouts - April 5, 2014

    […] 2. Practical Creative Writing A good site with all kinds of different writing exercises. […]

  2. Prompts and Exercises :: juice your mind | Writing :: the Craft - July 4, 2014

    […] Creative Writing Exercises – set your imagination free. […]

  3. Improve ur writing skill | sezarcicek - May 17, 2015

    […] http://www.practicalcreativewriting.com/creative-writing-exercises/ […]

  4. How To Be A Writer (Creative Writer) | BELLETRAS - July 28, 2015

    […] other great pages for you to visit are creative writing exercises and abstract creative writing exercises. I have not only used these many times myself I have also […]

  5. Anonymous - October 28, 2015

    […] http://www.practicalcreativewriting.com/creative-writing-exercises/ […]

  6. A.R. Beckert – Writing Exercises: Why do we use them, and do we need them? - January 6, 2017

    […] Creative Writing Exercises | Practical Creative Writing […]

Leave a Reply