Purple Prompts

These are some of the weekly writing prompts from Purple Ink, an eList for Journallers (online or offline).

May 2, 2004

  1. If you had to name one thing that most frightens you about growing old, what would it be?

  2. If you could change one thing about the building in which you work,what would you alter?

  3. If you could suddenly find out that one work of fiction was actually true, what book would you choose?

  4. If you were to have 2 new baby sons, what would you name them?

  5. If you could change places with any celebrity, but had to remain that person for life who would you choose?

  6. Did you go to college or vocational training where and when?

  7. Did you belong to boy/girl scouts? 4-H? Tell about experiences.

April 25, 2004

  1. What 10 books would you recommend to others?

  2. What are the 10 books you are now reading/have recently read?

  3. What 10 songs would be on your personal soundtrack?

  4. List what always makes you laugh?

  5. Suddenly you are invisible. List where you'd go and what you would do.

  6. List those favorite things, collections, and lucky charms you treasured growing up.

  7. Suddenly you can talk to animals. List the ones you want to converse with and why.

April 11, 2004

  1. How did you meet your partner, love of your life, significant other?

  2. If you could have the body of anyone, who would you choose?

  3. Describe the ideal peaceful place to you.

  4. What is something you dislike about yourself?

  5. Have you met or worked with any famous people? When, where etc?

  6. List the occupations of your parents, brothers, sisters, grandparents, great grandparents.

  7. What does mail mean to you? Are you a good letter writer? Who do you or have you corresponded with?

  8. What in your life do you doubt?

March 21, 2004

  1. What makes you beautiful? And don't give me any crap about not being beautiful. You might have to think quite a bit on this one, I understand- not everyone immediately associates themself with beauty, but the simple fact is, we all have beauty. If you just can't answer the question, then work on this one: How do you plan to discover your beauty?

  2. There is something you are just dying to accomplish. You are scared, nervous, lack confidence in your abilities, don't know where to start or some other reason stops you. WHAT IS IT?! Answer your journal honestly, please.

  3. For today, how does Spring make you feel? Are you in an area that has a nice long extended Spring, or a fast, 'over before it started' kind of Spring (like we usually have!)? Does Spring fill you with blossoms and green and growth? Do you dread the hot weather or look forward to Summer activities? Did Spring hold any special memories for you? Do you have any special Spring rituals- What activity is this Spring inspiring you to do?

  4. Write a short story about a childhood "nothing" moment. What the heck does that mean!? I want you to think about a small short little moment in childhood and write it into a story or prose-like expression. And it should be a very small moment that makes you think "why on earth did I remember that??" A moment like the first time you picked a flower from someone else's garden. The first time you really remember seeing the moon. The first moment you remember scratching yourself up from some childhood fall/tumble/bicycle crash, et cetera. Make these simple things, nothing deep that makes your mind wander- at least for this prompt, it surely can go where ever you wish it to go!

  5. With all the pressures during spring/summer- yardwork, job, children if you have them, seasonal obligations, how do make yourself sit back and enjoy the beauty of nature's colourful expressions? What do you do to ensure that you will have tiome to relax and enjoy the gorgeous summer days? Are you an outside person who loves the warm/hot weather and basks in it, or are you one of those who 'hibernates' this season out with icy drinks and high AC bills? What does summer remind you of? Are there smells and aspects of summer that take you right back to childhood or other times of your life? If they are happy times, how do you keep those memories alive? If they are not so happy, how do you keep yourself in the present and not allow yourself to give in, while still enjoying the surroundings that jar your senses? Do you celebrate summer with a brand new wardrobe or by changing out into 'summer' clothes with bright colours? Do you change your house decor in any way? Finally, just to sum it all up, how do you welcome summer into your life?

March 14, 2004

Pick an age in your childhood from which you begin to have the clearest memories, say 10 or 15. What age are you?

  1. How has the world changed since you were that age?

  2. Going back a little farther How has the world changed since your mother (or father) was that age?

  3. Going back even farther - How has the world changed since your grandmother (or grandfather) was that age?

  4. What do you consider the best invention(s) to become popular since you were that age? Why? What makes it great?

  5. What do you consider the best invention(s) to become popular since your grandmother (grandfather) was that age? Is it the same thing? Why?

  6. What do you suppose your mother (father) thinks is the best invention to become popular in that same time period?

  7. If you were to receive a visit from your great-great-grandmother or great-great-grandfather (someone who died well before you were born), what do you think would surprise them the most about you and your current world and life. Why?

Extra Question Set #1, #2

  • How old are you? (okay, if you don't want to be specific how about a decade)
  • Where do you live? Country? Type of home?
  • What do you do for a living? Or what did you do?
  • What type of education do you have?
  • Who is in your family?
  • Do you have pets?
  • What do you look like?
  • What languages do you speak?
  • What languages would you like to speak?
  • Who are your favorite actors?
  • Who are your favorite actresses?
  • What do you like to watch on tv?
  • Favorite colors?
  • Favorite films?
  • Favorite play?
  • Favorite magazines?
  • Favorite type of cheese?
  • Favorite drink?

March 7, 2004


If you could live in any other time period, which would you choose? Why?


What is your earliest memory, and why does it stand out in your mind?


Have you ever had a supernatural experience? If so, describe it. If not, would you like to? Why or why not?


If you had a secret you positively could not keep to yourself, who would you tell? Why would you tell this person?


Pick a movie monster that you can identify with. What about the monster makes you empathize with him/her?


If you could create a TV show, what would the title be and what would it be about? How would the show differ if you were both its creator AND its star?


Pick one of your favorite movies and tell us why you enjoyed it so much.

Extra Question Set #1

  • What are you currently reading?
  • Which room of your house is the messiest and why?
  • Have you ever dyed your hair? What colors?
  • What are your favorite musicians?
  • Who are your favorite painters? Why?
  • What monument would you like to see before you die? Why?
  • What nationalities are you?

Extra Question Set #2

  • What is your favorite season? Why?
  • What is your favorite type of day weather wise? Why?
  • Describe what your journal looks like.
  • What is love? How do you know your in love?
  • What type of car do you drive? What does it look like?
  • What do you collect?

Feb 29, 2004


Keep a record of what money you spend this week. Either paste in receipts or write it down.


What is the ideal peaceful place for you?


If you could rid the earth of one thing what would it be?


Name the best music/musical performance you have attended.


What fictional world would you like to inhabit?


List the contents of your closet.


If you could start an orphanage for children anywhere in the world where would it be and why?

Bonus Prompt

If you where to have 3 new baby daughters what would you name them? Sons?

Feb 23, 2004


Describe your favorite color in a paragraph or poem. How does it make you feel? What images does it evoke?


Design a board, video, card, or other type of game for your children. (Or for children in general if you don't have any.) What is the plot/storyline/main theme? Is it colorful? What does it teach them? You could also do a plot outline for a childrens' book, TV show, or movie.


These are the delicacies of a ruined evening...


Have you done anything recently that really made you feel great? Like you opened a gate or door to new possibilities? If so, what was it? If not, put a little bit of time aside in the next couple of days and let yourself be. Either take a luxorious bath, buy something you've been wanting, or (and this I recommend) do something you've never done before. Make out in an elevator, ride a roller coaster, give that nice stranger you meet in the grocery line your number and start a friendship.


Get out a piece of paper. On the right side, write down everything that you want, material or not. On the left side, write down how getting that thing would make you feel. When you're done, rip off the right side and throw it away. Keep the left side, and go for what would make you feel those things. (Say you put down a promotion, and that it would make you feel more appreciated. How else could you feel more appreciated?) When you work toward feelings, you're more open to possibilities.

Feb 16, 2004


Name five things in your refrigerator/freezer.
Name five things in your pantry.
Name five things under your kitchen sink.
Name five things around your computer.
Name five things in your medicine cabinet.


Sometimes we spend a lot of time and energy resisting change in our lives. Many of us don't like change...we prefer to keep things comfortable. But change is necessary for personal growth. How well do you deal with change? Do you try to keep things simple and routine in your life or do you love the challenge of new things?


What are three things you wish were never invented?


How would your day go if it went perfectly?


Every night at bedtime, say this prayer:
God, help me accept the truth about myself, no matter how magnificent it is.
(Rhonda Hull, Ph.D.)

What is the magnificent truth about yourself?


List 20 rules you've broken.


Part of being sane, is being a little bit crazy.
(Janet Long)

List the ways you are just a little bit crazy.

Feb 8 - Feb 15 2004


If you could have returned the love of someone you rejected in the past, who would it be?


If you were to pick a city which best represents your personality, which would you choose?


List your hobbies.


If you could prevent someone you know from overusing one word, what would the word be?


List you favorite cartoon characters.


Name the personality trait you have tried hardest to change in yourself.


Name your favorite book from childhood.

Feb 2, 2004

Super You

If you were a super hero(ine), list 10 super powers or qualities that youād have. What is your Achilles heel? Would you have a sidekick? Describe him or her. What type of transportation would you have (i.e., the batmobile or the invisible plane)? What features would it have? Describe your arch nemesis. Would you have a romantic interest? Describe him or her.


Even though the holidays are over, what's on your wish list? What material things are you drooling over right now? Why?

Speaking of material things, what is your gratification policy? Do you try to get what you want as soon as possible or do you prefer to take your time before acquiring new things? Why? What cultural, environmental, spiritual, and/or familial elements shape your policy?

Finding Your Own Style

I received the latest issue of WireWoman's "Lurpl" zine this weekend. Plenty of great ideas in there, as usual, but there was one thing in particular that Iāve been thinking about since I read it. With any kind of creative venture, most of us have a tendency to seek out every book, website, magazine, and other resource we can find on the subject. We like examples and full color photographs. We try some or all of the techniques we come across. The problem is (at least, for me), that it becomes very easy to get wrapped up in these other peopleās styles.

How do you keep the scale tipped on the side of Inspiration instead of Imitation? What is your take on what WW calls "Buying The Book"? Whether you keep "art journals" or regular journals, do you like to read up on the subject or do you prefer to keep outside influence to a minimum? If the former, how do you stretch beyond the how-to books and come up with something that is truly yours (describe or show us some examples if you can)? If the latter, why?

Does anyone else suffer from inspiration overload? When it comes to diaries and journals of any kind, I tend to keep the how-to books to a minimum and avoid the magazines altogether. I just can't take it. My brain completely absorbs the stuff from the "experts"and the "real" artists, and I end up in one or both of the above two situations.

Ignorance is Bliss

...if a woman was to see all the dishes that she had to wash before she died, piled up before her in one pile, she'd lie down and die right then and there.
- Aunt Jane of Kentucky, "Anonymous Was a Woman"

What knowledge are you glad you didn't have at the time?
What part of your future are you thankful that you couldn't envision as a child?
What aspects of daily life would have made you "lie down and die right then and there" had you but known?

Sweet Happy Life

Sort of a continuation of yesterday's prompt:
There is a lot of drudgery, tediousness, and repetition in daily life. There are plenty of things that all of us have to do in the course of a day or week that are absolutely no fun at all. Life shouldnāt necessarily be one big barrel of laughs, but at the same time, itās important that we not get weighed down by the endlessness of it all.

How do you rise above the dailiness? What techniques do you use to help yourself face down that hypothetical tower of dirty dishes? How do you diffuse the unpleasantness of certain things that you have to deal with in your life? Share some of the things that you do to make daily life a little sweeter.

Jan 26, 2004

Monday: Seasons

What time of year is your birthday? If you could have chosen to be born at any time of year, what would you choose and why?

Tuesday: Surprise! Make a wish!

How do you feel about your cultures' celebration of birthdays? Should a birthday be treated specially? Like a holiday? Do people spend too much energy on on birthdays?

Wednesday: You don't look a day over...

How do you feel about getting older? Have your feelings changed over time?

Thursday: Happy Birthday!

What does your birthday mean to you? How do you celebrate your birthday? Quietly alone? With a friend or two? With a big party?

Friday: Another place and time...

If you could choose to have been born at another place or time in history, would you? Where or when would you choose?

Saturday: It's your day to celebrate

When you were growing up, were birthdays treated specially? What made them special?

Sunday: I remember one year...

Do any of your birthdays stand out in your mind as being particularly memorable? What made them memorable?

Jan 19, 2004

  1. List the contents of your purse or carryall.

  2. List all the jobs you've ever had.

  3. List everything you have accomplished today, no matter how small.

  4. If you won a million dollars, what would you do?

  5. List your favorite subjects or topics. (The ones you're always reading about)

  6. List all of the ways you've simplified or streamlined your life.

  7. List all of the things you wanted to be "when you grew up".

  8. List the dishes your mother or grandmother made that you would love to have the recipe for.

  9. Name all of the books you have in your posession that you've never read.

  10. What is your most prized posession?

Jan 12, 2004


Pick your favorite color and write about it: why you like it, how it makes you feel, what 'pictures' come to mind when you think of that color.


Spray your favorite air freshner then write what you think about.


Look at yourself in the mirror for a few minutes. Describe the you that you see physically, emotionally, spiritually.


Describe what it is like when you wake up in the morning.


What is your favorite time of day? Describe it.


Close your eyes and imagine yourself on a walk around your neighborhood. Imagine all the things you see, hear, and smell. Describe your walk.


Decide what is your favorite word. Think about it for a while and write why you like that particular word.

Jan 04, 2004


As the holiday season is over and all the *parties*, all the *gifts* have been given and received, did someone give you a compliment that made you blush? Who was it? What was the compliment?

"Paper does not blush." American Proverb


What holiday leftovers still remain in your refrigerator?

"With each new day comes an opportunity for a new beginning." unkown


There's always alot of discussion about what we'd want to bring if we were on a deserted island but what is the first thing you would do upon your return from the island?

"Not all treasures come in silver and gold." from the movie Pirates of the Caribbean.


"I doubt the world holds for anyone a more soul-stirring surprise than the first adventure with ice cream". Heywood Broun

What is your favorite flavor of ice cream? Hard or Soft-Serve? What type of sundae do you usually order