BEST THRILLER AND SUSPENSE WRITING PROMPTS

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Showing 42 prompts reset

This week's contest:
Win $250

Showtime

99 contest entries /
99 stories

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days

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hours

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Closes at 23:59 - Dec 10 EST

Write a post-apocalyptic thriller.

Thriller and Suspense – 147 stories

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Write about someone who purposefully causes a power outage.

Thriller and Suspense – 153 stories

Win $250 in our short story competition 🏆

We'll send you 5 prompts each week. Respond with your short story and you could win $250!

Contest #123 LIVE

Enter our weekly contest!

This week's theme: Showtime


$250

Prize money

99

Contest entries

99

Stories

--

Days

--

Hours

--

Mins

--

Secs

Closes at 23:59 - Dec 10, 2021 EST
View details

Recent contests ✍️

#122 – Spree Season

#121 – Giving Thanks

#120 – Nostalgia

#119 – Listen

Recent winners 🏆

Deborah Elliottread

Rebecca Loftenread

Rachel Dzengelewskiread

Myia Melendyread

Leaderboard 🥇

#1 Zilla Babbitt

31728 points

#2 Abigail Airuedomwinya

21989 points

#3 Deidra Lovegren

21346 points

#4 Scout Tahoe

12597 points

#5 Rayhan Hidayat

10277 points

#6 Deborah Mercer

9479 points

#7 Corey Melin

7288 points

#8 Kathleen March

6877 points

#9 Roshna Rusiniya

6040 points

#10 Joshua G. J. Insole

5347 points

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A thriller is a fast-paced novel full of suspense, unexpected twists, and high stakes. The narrative is built for the specific purpose to propel the (usually fast-paced) action — taking readers on a rollercoaster.

If you want to write your own thrilling tale, here are a few types you might want to consider:

  • Politics
  • Espionage
  • Psychological
  • Action-adventure
  • Crime
  • Historical
  • Legal
  • Military
  • Domestic

In the meantime, hopefully this list of suspense story prompts will get the creative wheels turning, and have you dreaming up nail-biting, page-turning action!

Want more help learning how to write a short thriller story? Check out How to Write a Short Story That Gets Published — a free, ten-day course by Laura Mae Isaacman, a full-time editor who runs a book editing company in Brooklyn.

Have a story you’re ready to start submitting? Check out our list of writing contests or our directory of literary magazines.