About this project
PROMPT IRL (IN REAL LIFE!): A PROMPT JOURNAL + ANTHOLOGY
Prompt IRL is a writing prompt journal for you to write in, featuring what community members have submitted in response to these same prompts over the past year!
Prompt IRL will be a 72-page book, curated by me, and it will feature prompts and responses from the past year. Each blank page will open up with a writing prompt for you to fill in to your heart's desire. Flip the page, and you'll see what other people responded with in the past. Repeat.
I used to love writing on the Internet and finding new ways of expressing myself. As I got older, it became more difficult to write and find my voice because everything felt so public and on display. I never knew what to write about, and felt uncomfortable broadcasting about myself on the many social platforms that exist. Now that the Internet is so much about ~influencers~ and other people who have been writing for many years broadcasting their content, I wondered what spaces could exist for people who want time to figure it out alone, but share that experience and process with other people out there.
So I created Prompt, a low-key experiment over email that would empower people to submit, write, and create every single day. This was (and still is) the sign-up page, and it describes how Prompt works:
Over the past year, more than 1,000 people have joined Prompt's community, and contributed more than 5,000 pieces of writing over 270+ topics. Prompts have been varied, from "walking alone" to "potato" to "crying at work." Here's an excerpt of the email that you'd get back:
What I love about this community is that it gives people space to write thoughtfully, without performing in public, and to see so many different perspectives and thoughts on a single word or phrase.
People also write notes back to each other, and for the most part, it's a supportive community full of wonderful people, some of whom I've been lucky to meet.
Here's what some people have said about Prompt:
“It’s totally my crack. I love it.” - Julia Carpenter
"The dream jobs prompt helped me formulate my thoughts on a very personally important topic. My response ended up becoming the beginning of an article I published in Fast Company. Prompt is my favorite way to plumb my thoughts (and get it on a page.)" - Suzan Bond
"It's a darn good place to be on the Internet." - Richard Duck
People love the online Prompt experience so much that they've suggested tons of experiments to me to make it better. Prompt IRL was created out of many of these ideas. With this book, you have more time, ways to share stories with family / friends, and you can go back and respond with something new. You can also prompt your friends to write in your book, or buy a book for them and empower someone else to start finding their own voices, too.
I want to emulate the Prompt experience as much as possible in book form. With your help, I plan to work with a book designer to firm up how the volume will look. It'll also fund the minimum print run with the specifications that would do justice to what people have spent time writing.
Here's my own mock-up of what I think it could look like. There would be blank pages for you to write and draw without feeling restricted.
If you want to be inspired, you can see what other people wrote when you turn the page:
The book would feature multiple responses based on what people had written in the past to Prompt!
I hope the book keeps you company as you're writing in a cafe or taking yourself out to dinner. I hope it encourages you to let someone into your world as you keep finding your voice.
If you're new to Prompt, I hope Prompt IRL will be an easy way for you to jump in and start writing. If you've been on Prompt from the beginning, I hope it encourages you to revisit a fun experience and to see what it might prompt you to write about now. I also hope it serves as a memento for a special space on the Internet.
If this resonates with you, I'd love if you could sign up for Prompt, back this campaign and share it with your friends :]
Risks and challenges
Printing projects take time! If you back this project, I hope you get these volumes by September, but the timeline may run over.
The pages I've included in this Kickstarter are mock-ups, so it won't look identical to what I've drawn so far. I'll be working with a book designer to firm up how the edition will look, and I plan to continue updating you as the Kickstarter continues.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
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