Writing Lesson 15 – Priming Your Pump

Writing Prompts

Are you keeping your pump primed?

In order to get a stopped water pump working, it’s sometimes necessary to pour water over the stalled pump’s parts. This is called priming the pump. Once the water is running through the machine, it helps the pump kick into gear. 

Writers need to keep their own “idea pumps” primed as well. Many writers do this by journaling. You can write about the events of each day, your prayers or even experiment with poetry, story ideas, or creative thoughts. The act of writing can prime your pump as a writer!

To get you started, here are a few journaling prompts that can help you think about how to write about your emotions. The more you tap into those emotions, the stronger your creative writing will be. The prompts below also include Scripture you can use to help you connect those emotions with the emotions expressed in the Psalms. 

Day 1 – Write about a time when you felt really bored or frustrated.  What circumstances led up to this day, week, month in your life?  Describe, using as many good description words and similes as you can, how you felt.  Did you end up sleepy?  Restless?  What did you do to move beyond the boredom? After you do today’s journal entry, read through Psalm 58.  Do you see any emotions expressed that correlate with your feelings of frustration?   

Day 2 – Write about a time when you felt left out.  What circumstances led up to the time you were omitted?  Were you left out because of an oversight or intentionally?  How did you handle it?  Can you describe those feelings?  Brainstorm words and phrases that reflect how you felt.  After doing today’s journal entry, check out Psalm 142.  What verses echo feelings similar to yours?

Day 3 – Write about a time you got angry.  What were the circumstances leading into the situation?  Do you feel good about the way you handled it?  What happened after the “explosion”?  What were the results?  Brainstorm words and phrases that reflect how you felt.  Take some time today to read Psalm 109.  There is much anger expressed in this song to God.  What words or phrases do you see that remind you of the way you felt when you were angry? 

Day 4 – Write about a time when you felt gratitude.  Describe what led up to this moment/time in your life.  How did you respond?  When you look back at this event or experience, what sort of feelings arise in you?  Psalm 113 is a short song of gratitude to God.  What sorts of things was the psalmist thankful for? 

For more journaling prompts to prime your pump each day, please visit  http://www.jsgrammar.com/index.php?option=com_content&task=blogcategory&id=17&Itemid=31 to check out my booklet “From Heart To Page: Journaling Through The Year For Young Writers”.

About Michelle Van Loon

Author Michelle Van Loon home schooled her three children for 13 years. All three graduated from home school and are now young adults. Michelle began teaching groups of home schooled students in her local co:op what the Lord had taught her about writing. Over a decade ago, the success of these classes led to the launch of her home school writing tutorial business (www.homepagewriting.com).

Read more about Michelle.

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