Journal Writing Prompts for Authors

Journal writing can help make you a better writer, but what can you write about? Here are 56 journal writing prompts to help you out.

Personal Experience

  1. What is something interesting that happened to you today? Something out of the norm?
  2. What is your typical day like?
  3. Relate a funny experience from your childhood.
  4. Have you ever broken a bone? Write about the (first) broken bone you suffered.
  5. Write about the first date you went on.
  6. Write about a significant event, such as moving away to college, getting married, or having a baby.
  7. What was your favorite toy as a child?
  8. Write about an event that changed your life.
  9. When did you learn to ride a bike? Write about the experience.
  10. What was your favorite game to play as a child?
  11. Have you ever won a contest? When and for what?
  12. Write about a vivid dream you’ve had recently.
  13. Were you in any clubs as a kid? If yes, describe one of them.
  14. Write about a time when horsing around got you or a friend injured.
  15. Describe a fight you had with a friend or family member. Then tell it from the other person’s point of view.
  16. What did your childhood bedroom look like?
  17. What is your earliest memory?
  18. As a child, what did you want to be when you grew up? How does it compare with what you’re doing now?
  19. Write about a time you felt . . . (lonely, sad, joyful, jealous, angry, frustrated, depressed, motivated, anxious, frightened, selfish, nervous, magnanimous, lazy, supportive, etc).

Personal Information

  1. How many siblings do you have? Do you get along with them? Write briefly about each one.
  2. When and where were you born? Have you heard any interesting stories about your birth?
  3. What is your favorite food? Describe it.
  4. What is your favorite book and why?
  5. What is your favorite color? Has it always been your favorite color? How did it come to be your favorite?
  6. What holiday traditions does your family have?
  7. What was your first job? Did you enjoy it? Why or why not?

Introspective Questions

  1. Who is your hero or someone you greatly admire, and why?
  2. What does your handwriting tell others about you?
  3. Where is your “happy place?”
  4. What culture are you part of, and how does it affect who you are and your actions?
  5. What parental techniques or philosophies that your parents have do you disagree with?
  6. Do you have any beliefs or ideas that you used to hold strongly to but have been since convinced to think otherwise? How were you convinced?
  7. What is a modern-day convenience that you could not live without?
  8. Do you have an easy or a hard time making friends? Why?
  9. What makes someone a good friend? Are you a good friend?
  10. Who do you spend most of your time with, and how do they affect who you are and how you think?
  11. When was the last time you had to make a very difficult decision, and how did you make it?
  12. What is the most painful thing you’ve every been through, and how did it change you? What did you learn from it?
  13. How comfortable are you with talking to strangers? Are you able to speak your mind to waitresses, servers, store associates, doctors, nurses, and others? Why or why not?
  14. Describe a time when you made a mistake. Did you fully own up to it or try to minimize it? Or did you try to sweep it completely under the rug?
  15. What are you feeling right now and why?
  16. Is there something you used to hate but you have come to tolerate or even like because someone you care deeply about loves it?
  17. How have you changed in the last year? Your character, your beliefs, your personality, and so on.

Dreams and Goals

  1. Describe your perfect home library.
  2. If you won $500,000 (after taxes), what would you do with it?
  3. Where do you see yourself in five years? Ten?
  4. What do you plan to accomplish this year?
  5. If you could live anywhere, where would you live?


  1. Invent a new creature and describe it: what it eats, its intelligence, where it lives, etc.
  2. Describe what a car is and how it works to someone from the past.
  3. Make up a backstory about a stranger that you saw recently.
  4. Try a creative writing exercise from this post, or try a writing prompt generator.
  5. Sit outside and write about the sounds you hear. What is making those sounds and why?
  6. Describe a gourmet meal, being sure to talk about as many of the senses as possible.
  7. Describe yourself as if you were someone else meeting you for the first time.
  8. Rewrite a fairy tale by giving it a new ending or a fun twist (such as a different time period, a different setting, switched characters, etc.).

Do you have any good journal writing prompts to share? Join the conversation and discover how Book Cave can help your books reach more readers at

Originally published at on April 23, 2020.



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