Ron's Pear Pie Recipe
Janet Boyer Interviews Reading Adventures

3 Items Writing Prompt

Paper pencils small My husband, son and I enjoy Boyer Story Writing Games. Our favorite is the 3 Items Writing Prompt.

We assign three objects to one another and each must write a story that includes every element.

Here are the prompts from our Saturday night session:

Ron assigned me:

• A tank of propane
• Plank of wood
• Spider

3 item

I assigned Ron:

• A staple gun
• Feather
• Skis

We assigned our 11-year-old:

• A mouse
• Coffee
• Bike

Bike If you want someone to pick three items for you to use in your OWN story, give your Facebook friends or Twitter followers a shout-out for help. Or, ask an online writing group like the Writer’s Digest Community or Ticket to Write Yahoo Group—or even email a friend or text a family member, requesting three random objects.

No one to play with you? Pick up a book and turn to a random page, selecting the first noun you come across. You can also do this with a dictionary, encyclopedia, magazine, Magnetic Poetry kit, CD song list and so on. Or just look around you, picking three items that you see.

Go ahead and try it!

Here’s the first line of my story using the three objects my husband assigned to me:

“She knew the tank of propane would come in handy, especially after Diane stole her book idea.”

Coffee 100 Our son chose to write a true story with his three items:

“Noah rides his bike now and then. He doesn’t ride all the time. Sometimes, when he drinks coffee, he gets energy. The next day, he takes his coffee on the porch. Before he could drink it, he saw that a mouse had died next to the step.”

Here some three-item lists for you to use in your own stories; feel free to mix and match! In fact, I’d love to read any stories you write based on any of these words—or your own Three Item Writing Prompts!

Purple paint unopened letter    rusty skeleton key   caterpillar

yellow chrysanthemums   topaz ring    jack-o-lantern

monocle  cell phone    theater ticket

spoon   false eyelashes   cup of dirt

½-gallon purple paint  comb   ice cube

used teabag  jellyfish   typewriter

Kleenex  snowman sculpture   jackhammer


I'd love to read anything you come up with using the 3 Item Writing Prompt, so feel free to tell me about it!

-- Janet


The comments to this entry are closed.