Giant Golden Buddha and 364 more 5 minute writing exercises is a series of writing prompts by author C.M. Mayo. Here’s how it works. There is a prompt for each day of the year. After reading the daily prompt, write on that topic for at least 5 minutes and become a better writer. Personally, I use Giant Golden Buddha as a warm-up exercise if I’m writing a long piece or am experiencing writer’s block.
Here’s an example prompt:
This is a little exercise in magical realism. With realistic detail, write a scene in which your character has a conversation with a piece of furniture. Assume that the person and the piece of furniture disagree about something.
Often you’ll find that these prompts are short, simple, and really fun to write about. When I wrote on this prompt, I wrote about a chair and a person arguing about the legitimacy of ergonomic furniture design. It was really entertaining to write and I feel comfortable assuming I wouldn’t have written that type of piece without being prompted.
This series is one that I really enjoy for a few reasons. First, it has helped me become a better writer. In most things practice makes perfect, and writing is no different. I’ve found that this kind of practice is really good at flexing those writing muscles. Also, as I said before, I find that these exercises are nice warm-ups for writing anything longer than a couple of pages. I use these exercises in my writing process to get the creative juices flowing before writing a piece that I’d rather not trudge through.