The Jar of Nouns. A Fun Writing Prompt!

Jar of Nouns

You can get help with this part if you like.

Cut up a sheet of paper in several two by three inches pieces.

On one side of the paper pieces, write a noun (some can be proper) just make them random, and place them in the jar.

Then repeat the process with all the paper until your jar is loosely full.
(I choose my nouns roulette-style from the dictionary or Shakespear to work into modern-day sentences)

For an on-the-fly writing prompt, pull 5 nouns from the jar, and write for 15 minutes using all 5 nouns.

Remember you can refresh your jar’s nouns as often as you like.

(or sans jar, do this with a stack of 3x5 cards, shuffle and choose 5 at random)

For an extra challenge, reveal only one noun at a time and write in the order they appear.

Share here any stories you feel comfortable with.

Pssst…Doing this prompt with a group of writers that all contribute to the noun selection, becomes a laugh-out-loud hilarious game when you hear what people come up with. The varied contributions build more challenging and diverse writing prompts.

Make one as a personalized gift for the other writer in your life. Use any container you like, and have fun with it!


This is how I create writing prompts for myself, only I use descriptive verbs, i.e., splintered, crinkled, sauntered, floated, etc. Verbs work better for me because they help me visualize tone and atmosphere. It’s a great exercise to spark impromptu writing.


Kelly, I like that! (I’m going to need more jars)

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