A Fortune in Writing Prompts

Fortune cookies, that is! Let me back up and start at the beginning. I recently started leading a weekly writing group after its founder passed away. She’d established a great group that meets weekly for two hours, doing ten minute free-writing activities. I was honored when asked to continue the group. I’d been taking different ideas for writing prompts to the group for awhile, and had been looking forward to sharing with Alice the ideas I’d come up with while away. Though I won’t get a chance to do that, I can bring those activities to the group anyway, knowing her spirit is cheering us all on.

One idea was to use those fortunes we get from cookies at Chinese restaurants:

I started collecting the fortunes and eventually had a dozen or so that I took to the group. I handed them out randomly, just as you’d get a random fortune in a restaurant. “Write something about this fortune,” I said, and set the timer for the usual 10 minutes.

Wow! What fun! Some wrote about a character getting that fortune and how it fit (or didn’t) into that character’s life. Others wrote about the fortune itself. Another wrote about the fractured English translation that rendered the fortune nearly unreadable. Still another chose to write about the lucky numbers on the back.

The only thing I’ll do differently next time I do this activity is take the cookies đŸ™‚

Try this — and let us know how it goes.

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