This is a writing prompt from US horror and spec-fic writer Todd Keisling.

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Image source: Flickr / chuckp

My first creative writing instructor was a wiry, soft-spoken fellow by the name of Tom Marksbury. I learned a lot from him, and in a lot of ways, I owe my entire writing career to him. One of the best pieces of advice I’ve ever received came from his feedback: “I want to see something different from you next time. I want you to try a different perspective. Try stepping out of your comfort zone a little bit. See what happens.”

I took that advice to heart. I’ve spent more than a decade trying to step out of my comfort zone every time I approach the page. So with respect to Tom’s advice, I’m going to pose the following prompt:

What makes you uncomfortable?

Step out of your comfort zone for a moment. Think about what really makes you squirm, what brings you distress, what makes you cry or feel completely lost. Focus on it, face it, embrace it, and give it your words.


Todd Keisling is a writer of horror and speculative fiction, as well as the author of the novels A Life Transparent and The Liminal Man (a 2013 Indie Book Award Finalist). Born in Kentucky, he now lives with his wife and son somewhere near Reading, Pennsylvania. He still has a day job, he's awkward and weird, and if you were to live next door to him, your grass would probably die.

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samvanz

Sam van Zweden was Writers Bloc’s Online Editor from 2013 - 2015. A Melbourne-based writer and blogger, her work has appeared in The Big Issue, Voiceworks, Tincture Journal, Page seventeen, and others. She’s passionate about creative nonfiction and cross stitch. She tweets @samvanzweden.