20 Marvelous Creative Journal Prompts for When You Just Don’t Know What to Write

Do you want to start creative journaling, but find yourself at a loss for ideas of what to write about? If so, you’re in the right place because you will find 20 outstanding creative journal prompts right here. 

Prewritten journal prompts are some of my favorite creative journaling exercises

Creative journal prompts are designed to get your imagination working. This means you don’t have to begin with a blank page, your writing can flow freely, and you can take your responses as far as you want.

Text creative journal prompts for when you just don't know what to write on white background over image of woman sitting at wood folding table and writing.

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How Do You Write a Good Journal Prompt Response?

First of all, please let go of the ‘good’ vs. ‘bad’ judgements when it comes to journaling. This is your personal writing. When it’s all said and done, you can write whatever and however you wish!

Still, if you’re using journaling to expand your creativity, here are some things to consider when choosing prompts and doing creative journaling:

  • Choose prompts about things that you enjoy thinking about or doing — or that will make you think ‘outside the box.’ 
  • Because creative journal writing is a process of self-expression, it’s important to choose topics that work for your needs and wants! 
  • Creative journals are not meant to be written in order, nor do they have any rules.
  • Creative journal prompts are meant to be written freely and without much thought — so don’t feel like you need to go back through them later or edit yourself. Write what’s on your mind in the moment as it comes up. 
  • Creative journals can take any form — from poetry to short stories, lists, or drawings.  
  • Give the process your time and attention, and you will find yourself writing more, trying new creative things, and having more fun every day.

20 Creative Journal Prompts 

If you find yourself sitting down to write only to stare down at a blank page, with no idea where to start, then these creative journal prompts will definitely help you to get started. 

Click here for a printable version.

1. List three qualities that are important to you. Do these qualities align with the life that you are living right now?

2. What member of your family are you most like? What common traits do the two of you share, and how are you different? What would happen if you switched places for a week?

3. What celebrity would you love to spend the day with? Who is it, what would you do or talk about?

4. What was the last book you read? What was the title? Who was your favorite character and why?

5. Write about an object you can see near you and the story behind it.

6. What might be the result of an encounter between your current self and your older, wiser self?

7. Create a poem from something that’s happening right now, such as watching TV or listening to music. 

8. You are stranded on a deserted island with plenty of food and water, but only one other person — who would it be? What would you do with this other person to pass the time or better your situation?

9. What do you imagine the world will look like ten years from now? What do you think will be the same, and what will be different? 

10. Go through all of the pictures on your phone until you find one with a stranger in the background. Now write about their day leading up to the moment the photo was taken.

11. Choose a word that you want to explore for five minutes or more. Write about what this word means to you, where it comes from, if there are any other meanings associated with it — anything you can think of!

12. You are the world’s most well-known authority on one subject — what is it? How did you become so knowledgeable on that particular subject?

Woman sitting at wood folding table and writing responses to creative journal prompts.

13. Three beings live in the deepest parts of your mind: a good being, an evil one and a balanced one. What type of interactions and shenanigans do these beings get up to?

14. Write a story from your point of view about something that happened today. Then, write the same story from the point of view of someone else who was there.

15. Create a list of things that make you happy — either write the words or draw pictures.

16. What is your favorite time of day? What makes it special? 

17. Choose a character from one of your favorite books and write about them. What is it like to be in their shoes on this particular day, doing the things that they do every day?

18. Browse through the recent photos you’ve taken. Write for five minutes or more on one photo and why it makes this particular moment so special to you. What do these memories mean?

19. Write a very short story designed to make a child you know laugh hysterically. Include both real-life and imaginary items and people. 

20. What are some things you would like to do in the next five years of your life that will make you happy or fulfilled? Write a list, draw pictures, or make a vision board page in your journal. Pick one or two things you could do within the next day that would help make this happen.

How To Get Started With Creative Journaling

Now that you have some creative journal prompts to help get you started writing more often, what else do you need to start creative journaling? 

All you need now is a journal to write in. Really, you don’t need anything more than a spiral-bound notebook, or even single pieces of notebook paper and a folder. 

However, if you want your journal to look and feel more special you might like something like this notebook

Would you like your journal to be colorful and bright? If so, then you might really enjoy writing with these erasable gel pens that come in beautiful colors. 

You have your prompts, you have your tools, now all you have to do is set some time aside to sit down and start creative journaling. Set an alarm on your phone or write it in your planner.

Favorite Writing Supplies

JoyNote A5 Classic Notebook with lined pages

PILOT G2 Premium Refillable & Retractable Gel Pens, Fine Point, Assorted Colors

OxAndPine refillable leather journal

OxAndPine Refillable Personalized Premium Leather Journal with Elastic Closure

Prompt Me Again!: Creative Writing Workbook & Journal


More Writing Inspiration

5 Daily Creative Writing Exercises You (Probably) Haven’t Seen Before

Best Journals for Writing: 6 Top Picks

More Than 1064 Journal Writing Prompts

Top 7 Benefits of Journaling – Smart Mom Smart Ideas

How To Start Morning Creative Writing for More Productive Days

Quiet Journal: Discover Your Secret Strengths and Unleash Your Inner Power – Susan Cain

Concluding Thoughts on Creative Journaling

Creative journaling gives you an outlet to get all of the thoughts in your head down on paper in whatever form appeals to you. It can help give you more mental clarity, and it’s even a form of self-care. 

Taking time to do something that is solely for you is important for your overall well-being as you Build Your Best Life. 

Use the creative journal prompts found here to help get you started anytime you aren’t sure what to write about, and enjoy the benefits of journaling as you explore your creativity. 

You’ve got this!


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