Writing prompts are a lot of fun to play with, but I do get questions about them: “How do they work?”
A prompt is just something that spurs your imagination. It could be anything from “write about what you had for dinner last night,” to elaborate frameworks onto which you can put a story: “after dinner one night, a man ran outside in his pajamas and shouted, …” It’s that dot-dot-dot that’s the key – it’s the unfinished sentence, the idea that begs to be fleshed out, that gives you the magic of the prompt.
If you’re in the Chicago area and want to try it out for yourself, stop by Writer Zen Garden’s popular Saturday series, The Prompt Circle. It’s free and lots of fun. If you’re not in the area, try going to Google and type in, “writing prompt.” You’ll get lots of ideas.