The Door Prompt

I am excited to share my first writing prompt with you! Whenever I post an activity, prompt, or guiding writing exercise in the Support For Writers section of my site, I will always write a blog post about the activity as well. That way, if you follow my blog you’ll always know when new exercises become available.  Now, without further ado…

This door was hugely important to Hansel and Gretel. Just Saying.


Writing Process: Inciting incident/Conflict, Idea Generator

Genres: Playwriting, Prose, Poetry

In screen writing, a popular piece of advice is “Enter Late, Leave Early,” which means that a scene should start in the midst of action already taking place and finish before every loose end is tied up.  “Enter late” is a great piece of advice to apply to all writing, because it’s essentially encouraging writers to think in terms of immediately engaging the audience.  This simple prompt, which starts off with a charged action, encourages writers to dive right into the inciting incident and the conflict of the piece.


The scene must start in the following way:

(The stage is black. In the darkness, a door slams.)


The story must starting in the following way: I/He/She slammed the door.


The poem must start in the following way:  A door slams.

If you’re not quite sure where to begin, here are some questions to help you generate ideas:

  1. What kind of door is it? (Or, where is this door?)
  2. Who slammed the door? What fueled the slam?
  3. Was the person who slammed the door entering, exiting, or neither?

I hope you enjoy The Door Prompt. Feel free to comment or ask questions, or to let me know how it went!

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