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The Elephant in the Room

51 contest entries /
39 stories









Closes at 23:59 - Jul 19 EST

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Contest #259 LIVE

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This week's theme: The Elephant in the Room


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Closes at 23:59 - Jul 19, 2024 EST
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The best writing prompts for teens

Are you looking for activity ideas to get kids off social media for half an hour? We've got three words for you: teenage writing prompts. No matter the season, parents and teachers with students in school alike can turn to writing prompts to help your teenager experience growth through writing. Creative writing prompts can help teens engage with their feelings, exercise critical thinking via journaling, and capture daily thoughts about life and the world around them. For immediate impact, this page is chock-full of ideas to get them started!

If you're looking to cut to the chase, here's a top ten list of our favorite writing prompts for teens:

  • A "good witch" and a "bad witch" meet for lunch. What do they talk about?
  • Start your story with “Today’s the day I change.”
  • This was the weekend you'd been waiting for for the past three years.
  • Write a story about a character experiencing independence for the first time.
  • Write a letter to your future self in five years.
  • Write a short story where all of the characters are villains!
  • Finish this sentence: "I strongly believe that..."
  • Write a story about a character making a big change.
  • Write a story with a Character versus Character conflict. Think of Elizabeth Bennet vs. Mr. Darcy in Pride and Prejudice.
  • Write a story with a Character versus Nature conflict. Think of Mark vs. Mars in The Martian.

If you have a teen who’s looking to become an author, check out our free resources on the topic:

Reedsy's guide to novel writing (blog post)— Go from zero to hero with our ten-day course to writing a book. Every book differs depending on your genre, but if you look deeper, they all rely on similar basic principles. We take you through all of those elements of a story, from structuring a plot to choosing a POV.

What is Exposition? Examples of Backstory in Action — When writing fiction, anything goes. So how are you going to drip-feed your reader information? Rather than holding their hand through the story, you will want to provide backstory slowly and subtly. That’s where exposition comes in.

How to Develop Characters (free course) — Your characters could make or break your book. Readers may not finish your story if they're not invested enough in the characters you build! Luckily, we've got just the free resource for you: another free ten-day course that will get you thinking about character development in a new way.

Want to encourage teens to start submitting their story? Check out Reedsy’s weekly short story contest for the chance of winning $250! You can also check out our list of writing contests or our directory of literary magazines for more opportunities to submit your story.


How to Write a Novel

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RBE | Illustration — We made a writing app for you | 2023-02

We made a writing app for you

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