Time to light a fire under your muse. Grab a cuppa and get ready to delve into a next volume of the Writing Dare Collection.
We’ve all been there: the scene is guttering like a candle in the wind and now the entire story threatens to fade away before your eyes. Your writing has lost the spark that kept it alive, kept it absorbing and dynamic and fresh. You need to return that spark to it if you want the story and your interest in it to survive. But how?
Allow me to introduce the writing dare. It courts conflict. It’s unexpected. It’s different. And it’s what’s going to rekindle your sputtering scene.
What is a writing dare? It might be a line, a secret, a character, an animal, an event... The list goes on. Your challenge is to include as many or as few of them in your story as you want.
Interested? If so, then...
Writers, I dare you to...
Bring back someone your main character thought was long dead—and they have some bad news.
Turn up the intensity of the weather. If it’s raining, let it flood! If it’s sunny, let your characters fry!
Have your character return to a ransacked house.
Afflict your characters with some kind of malady—a cough, a cold, or something far more debilitating.
Have your character break something in the next scene (a nail, a vase, a nose... The list goes on).
Let some creepy-crawlies loose in your next scene.
Have your character adopt a stray animal.
Have your character eavesdrop on a damning conversation.
Hide a ticking time bomb in your next scene. Will your characters deactivate it or run from it? That is, if they find it in time...
Send a four-legged beast (horse, hippo, angry hamster, etc.) stampeding through your next scene.
Add a suspicious smell to your next scene. When your character investigates, they find something they never expected.
Have your character fall asleep at an inconvenient or life-threatening moment. Will they wake in time?
Send an assassin into your next scene!
Hide a body in somewhere in this chapter.
Rob a character of one of their senses, temporarily or permanently.
Have your character choke on something—their food, their drink, their words...
Have a character hallucinate.
Give a character a bad reaction to something they eat.
Meddle with your reader’s mind: introduce an unreliable narrator to your story.
Have your protagonist do something against their better judgement in the next scene.
The Writing Dare Archives
or return to the Inspiration Station for more prompts