New year, new story, one word: January '21 photo writing prompt contest

January 2021 photo writing prompt (word BEGIN on a white coffee mug sitting on a wooden kitchen table)
Date Posted:

New year, new story. And it starts with one word.

For the last 15 days of December, we counted down to a new year and a new narrative by defining literary terms that are the building blocks of a great story and sharing them on social media.

Now it’s time to begin anew.

Instead of resolutions at the New Year, I like to choose a word that embodies what I aspire to over the coming months. One year, my word was manifest, and I focused on making things happen for myself, in life, love, career, and community. Another year, my word was embrace, and I tried to step out of my comfort zone and identify opportunities in places I might not normally have looked.

Have you ever tried this—choosing a word to live by, instead of making a resolution?

Today is the first day of a brand new year. When you think about where you have been, where you are now, and where you want to go, what word comes to mind, writer?

Consider this our first photo writing prompt of 2021. Your next story, whether it's about your life or it's one you create, begins with a single word. What is yours, and why?

I hope you will share it with us, and consider writing with us in the coming year.

Monthly photo prompt writing contest for email list community members!

If you aren’t currently enrolled in a Center course (or even if you are!) but want to write with us, we host a community-building photo writing prompt project through our email list.

How it works

Every first of the month, we will present a new photo. Using this photo as a prompt, our subscribing community members are invited to participate in our in-list writing challenge to see who can create a strong, detailed, feature-worthy response in under 500 words. (Subscribing gets you a free download of One Year of Weekly Writing Prompts, our Sunday emails brimming with tips and inspiration for writers, the occasional exclusive discount or package deal on Center offerings, and access to this friendly-fun “contest,” so what are you waiting for?)

Once you’re subscribed, get writing! Copy and paste your response to the photo prompt into an email and send it to Stacia (sfleegal at creativewritingcenter dot com, subject line “[Month] photo prompt submission”) before noon on the last day of each month.

Submit for a chance to be featured and win $50

The winning submission will be featured in the first Sunday email of the incoming month, published along with a new photo prompt.

To offer a bigger reward for writers who participate in our monthly photo prompt contest, every submission will be one entry into a drawing for the winner’s choice between 1) $50 off the Center course of their choosing, OR 2) a $50 Amazon gift card. Each month’s featured writer will get two entries into the drawing. There will be two drawings each year: July 1 for submissions received January 1 through June 30, and January 1 for submissions received July 1 through December 31.

Remember, only email list community members can participate and will see each month’s selection, so join us if you want to join us!

Happy writing,

Stacia M. Fleegal, Director