Beginner’s Guide to 15 Minute Prompts

Have you read the How this Works Guide and yet, you still have no clue how to participate in 15 Minutes of Creativity? Well that’s okay, in all honesty, most of the founders of this website struggled with how they each approached the prompts. Some struggled with the time constraint, others with condensing their over complicated ideas into a manageable 15 minute chunk and finally those who struggled with the consistency of participating every week.

This 5 Step guide is meant to give you newbies-and returning veterans-some tips and tricks to make the most out of your 15 Minutes.

  • 1. Brainstorm

Even though the prompt itself is 15 minutes long, you should still take at least five minutes of your time to ponder over the prompt that you want to tackle. Outline what events you want to include, do a few scribbles of concepts that you have been inspired with while thinking about the prompt. This pre-production can make a drastic difference to your final result. Since the whole point of these 15 minute prompts are to spend as little time as possible to actually get creative projects done, I’d recommend sticking to five to ten minutes to brainstorm and plan out how you are going to approach the prompt.

  • 2. Do Over

15 minutes pass and you aren’t happy with the results of your prompt. Not a problem! Reset your timer and give the prompt another shot. 15 minutes can feel like an eternity, other times in a blink of an eye your timer is already ringing. However, once you do your prompt a second time, you’ll have a better idea of how long your idea is going to take to execute. Did you feel like you were rushing? Then use less adjectives when you write, don’t mention that background character that didn’t impact your story, and condense your ideas a little. Did you run out of things to write before time was up? Maybe you need to slow down and spend more time setting the scene, use your second go-around to really expand on your ideas from your first draft. My personal suggestion is not to go over three drafts, these prompts are meant to be small quick bursts of manageable projects.

  • 3. Skim

These 15 minute prompts are meant to be done quickly. This means that unless you feel as if your work is completely unreadable due to spelling errors, then leave your prompt alone. If you must edit your results afterward, I’d recommend only spending 1 to 5 minutes making any major spelling or grammatical changes. These prompts are meant to be raw material you create just to jumpstart your creativity. If you want to refine your work later, then set some time aside and really work on your craft.

  • 4. Save

Whether you have created a short story, a sketch, or a song, make sure to save your work. Paste your text in a word document and create a folder to store all your prompts. You’ll see with time how much you grow as an artist if you keep on expressing yourself in a short time span. Also you never know when these quick prompts may inspire something greater. If you draw something, try to keep a folder in your room with your sketches or scan them into your computer. There are online services such as Photobucket that can store your pictures for future use.

  • 5. Share

Whether you decide to post your work online for the world to see or print it out for your friends, you should definitely share your work. Feedback is something that will make you grow as an artist and it’s something that the founders do on a weekly basis. If you do decide to post your works online, please feel free to comment on the Prompt that you were inspired by with the URL of your work or use the hashtag listed here. I want to encourage you to do our prompts and post them up, even if it’s in response to a prompt that was posted weeks ago. After all, you never know when we’ll do a Throwback Thursday and round up old prompts to showcase.

I hope with this guide you will feel confident, motivated and inspired to join us on our artist journey. Feel free to share this with your friends if you want them to get creative.

One thought on “Beginner’s Guide to 15 Minute Prompts

  1. Pingback: Stop Talking – Start Doing : Blah Blah Blah Day | 15 Minutes of Creativity

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