Summer Writing Prompts: 100 Ideas to Write All Summer Long

by Sue Weems | 0 comments

Summer is the perfect time and season to practice writing and let it feel more like play than work. Today, I've collected a list of summer writing prompts: enough to write one per day of the season! 

Teal pool water and yellow float with title 100 Summer Writing Prompts

A few summers ago, I led summer writing camps for kids called Write Camp. It was a blast helping kids of all ages get their fantastical ideas down on paper. My sister signed up my nephew, even though he was a reluctant third grade writer at the time. She wasn't sure he'd even participate.

I assured her that the no-pressure, fun environment would help him imagine writing in a new way, and that he would finish the summer with a story or two and a new understanding of writing.

I'm happy to report I was right! He and his fellow write campers all finished stories and left feeling more confident in their writing skills. 

Sometimes we spend so much time trying to get students to write correctly that we drain all the fun out of it. We forget that the first step to becoming a strong writer is to actually write. Try these summer writing prompts to help you (or a young writer in your life!) have some writing fun.

Summer journal prompts

If you keep a journal like me, try one of these prompts for some quick summer journaling. 

1. Describe the perfect summer day from beginning to end. What activities would you engage in and why?

2. Write about a memorable vacation or summer road trip. What made it special and why do you still remember it?

3. Share your favorite summer recipe. Include the ingredients and step-by-step instructions. How does it remind you of summer?

4. Write about a summer adventure you would like to experience. It could be something daring or out of your comfort zone. Why does it intrigue you?

5. Describe a summer tradition or ritual that you and your family or friends have. What makes it meaningful and how does it enhance your summer experience?

6. Write about a time when you felt completely relaxed during the summer.

7. Share your favorite summer read or book recommendation.

8. Write about a summer hobby or activity that brings you joy. How did you discover this hobby, and how does it make your summer more fulfilling?

9. Describe a summer sunset or sunrise that left a lasting impression on you. What were the colors like, and how did the scene make you feel?

10. Write about a summer project or goal you have set for yourself. How do you plan to accomplish it, and what impact do you hope it will have on your summer?

11. Share a list of your favorite summer songs or a summer playlist. Why do these songs resonate with you, and how do they enhance your summer vibe?

12. Write about a summer friendship that has played a significant role in your life. How did you meet, and what makes this friendship special?

Summer story starters

Use one of these sentence starters to get your own story off and running!

13. The sun-drenched beach was bustling with laughter and the sound of crashing waves until…

14. In the sleepy seaside town, 

15. As the ice cream truck jingled its way down the neighborhood streets, a group of friends suddenly noticed…

16. The sweltering heat seemed unbearable until…

17. Deep in the forest, a group of campers stumbled upon a hidden waterfall, sparking…

18. In a small coastal village, a young girl discovered a message in a bottle, and…

19. The couple stood in the field of sunflowers when they noticed…

20. At the annual summer fair, a shy teenager accepts a dare to visit a fortune teller who…

21. The fireflies danced in the warm night air, illuminating the path leading to…

22. On a remote island, a group of siblings stumbled upon an old map that led them to…

23. As the summer storm unleashed its fury, a group of teenagers sought refuge in an abandoned mansion, only to discover…

Summer travel prompts

24. Imagine you're on a tropical island paradise. Describe the crystal-clear waters, palm trees swaying in the breeze, and the sensation of warm sand between your toes.

25. Create a travel itinerary for a road trip along the scenic coastal highway, complete with stops at charming seaside towns and breathtaking viewpoints.

26. You've just arrived in a bustling city known for its vibrant street markets and cultural landmarks. Write about your first impressions and the unique experiences you encounter.

27. Picture yourself hiking through a majestic national park, surrounded by towering mountains, cascading waterfalls, and abundant wildlife. Describe the awe-inspiring beauty of nature.

28. You've decided to embark on a backpacking adventure across Europe. Write about the different cities you visit, the diverse cultures you experience, and the unforgettable people you meet along the way.

29. Imagine exploring a historical city filled with ancient ruins and architectural wonders. Describe the rich history and cultural significance of the landmarks you encounter.

30. You're on a gastronomic journey, discovering the flavors and culinary delights of a foreign country. Write about the mouthwatering dishes, local specialties, and the joy of indulging in new tastes.

31. Picture yourself lounging on a luxurious cruise ship, sailing through turquoise waters and visiting exotic islands. Describe it!

32. You've decided to embark on a backpacking trip through a dense rainforest. Write about the vibrant biodiversity, the sounds of exotic creatures, and the sense of adventure as you navigate through the wilderness.

33. Imagine staying at a cozy mountain lodge, surrounded by mountain peaks and alpine meadows in full summer bloom.

34. You've chosen to visit a remote village tucked away in the countryside. Write about it!

35. Picture yourself on a safari in the African savannah, surrounded by majestic wildlife. Describe all you see.

Summer setting prompts

While some of these overlap with other prompts, use these to practice sensory details and setting. 

36. Describe the feeling of sinking your toes into warm, soft sand on a sunny beach during the peak of summer.

37. Paint a vivid picture of a vibrant summer sunset, capturing the hues of orange, pink, and purple that streak across the sky.

38. Describe the refreshing sensation of jumping into a crystal-clear pool or lake on a scorching summer day, highlighting the coolness against your skin.

39. Depict the sights, sounds, and scents of a bustling farmers' market in the summertime, with rows of colorful fruits and vegetables, the chatter of vendors, and the aroma of freshly baked goods.

40. Portray the atmosphere of a lively summer festival, showcasing the lively music, energetic crowds, and a kaleidoscope of vibrant decorations and food stalls.

41. Describe the lush greenery and delicate blossoms of a summer garden, emphasizing the fragrance of blooming flowers and the buzzing of bees among the petals.

42. Paint a picture of a tranquil summer morning in the countryside, capturing the mist rising from the fields, the chirping of birds, and the gentle rustle of leaves in the breeze.

43. Depict the scene of a family picnic in a park.

44. Describe the exhilaration of a thrilling roller coaster ride at a busy theme park, conveying the anticipation, adrenaline rush, and exhilarating twists and turns.

45. Portray the charm of a quaint seaside town, highlighting the pastel-colored houses, the aroma of freshly caught seafood, and the sound of seagulls soaring overhead.

Childhood summer prompts

46. Recall a favorite childhood summer memory and describe it in vivid detail, from the sights and sounds to the emotions you felt.

47. Write about your most treasured summer toy or activity from your childhood. What made it special, and why did you enjoy it so much?

48. Describe a fun summer activity you did with your friends (or family) when you were younger. What did you do, and how did it strengthen your bond?

49. Write about the excitement and anticipation you felt as summer vacation approached each year. What were some of the activities you looked forward to the most?

50. Recall a summer camp experience from your childhood. Describe the camp setting, the activities you participated in, and the friendships you formed.

51. Write about a summer tradition that was unique to your family when you were a child. What made it special, and how did it create lasting memories?

52. Describe a magical summer night from your childhood. Were there fireflies lighting up the sky or a mesmerizing display of stars? How did it make you feel?

53. Recall a day of summer when you discovered something new and exciting, whether it was a hidden spot in your neighborhood or a fascinating creature in nature. Describe the moment of discovery.

54. Write about a summer project or hobby you pursued as a child. How did it ignite your creativity?

55. Describe a favorite summer treat from your childhood, whether it was a refreshing ice cream flavor or a homemade dessert. 

56. Recall a summer book or story that captivated your imagination as a child. Describe the characters, the setting, and the emotions it evoked.

57. Write about a summer family vacation you took as a child. Describe the experience.

Summer poetry prompts

Maybe you want to try your hand at poetry this summer! Remember that poetry thrives on precise word choices that convey concrete images and emotion. Practice playing with specificity! 

58. Write an acrostic poem capturing the essence of summer, one word or phrase per letter S-U-M-M-M-E-R.

59. Craft a poem that explores the energy of a beach on a hot summer day.

60. Write a poem inspired by the scent of freshly cut grass and the feeling of bare feet on the lawn.

61. Reflect on the beauty of a blooming flower in the summer heat.

62. Create a poem that embodies the freedom and exhilaration of riding a bicycle through winding country roads.

63. Write a poem that paints a vivid picture of a summer storm.

64. Craft a poem that explores the enchantment of a starlit sky on a clear summer night, evoking a sense of wonder and awe.

65. Reflect on the simple pleasure of enjoying a juicy slice of watermelon or peach on a hot summer day.

66. Write a poem inspired by the sound of children's laughter echoing through a park.

67. Capture the serenity and tranquility of a lazy afternoon spent swinging in a hammock, embracing the leisurely pace of summer.

68. Create a sonnet about your favorite flavor of ice pop.

69. Reflect on the feel of running through a sprinkler or a summer rain.

70. Write a poem inspired by the rhythm and energy of a summer music festival.

71. Craft a poem that explores the nostalgia of chasing fireflies in the twilight.

72. Reflect on the passage of time and the bittersweet feeling of summer's end.

73. Write a poem inspired by the sand on a beach towel.

74. Build a haiku about something that reminds you of summer in nature. (For haiku help, go here.)

75. Write a poem about missing out on a treasured summer tradition and what you had to do instead. 

Summer adventure story ideas

76. Two best friends embark on a sailing adventure, exploring remote islands, encountering marine wildlife, and discovering the true meaning of friendship.

77. In a sleepy beach town, a young artist finds inspiration in the local community and stages an unforgettable summer art exhibition.

78. During a summer internship at a renowned museum, a curious teenager stumbles upon a secret society dedicated to preserving the city's forgotten history, and becomes entangled in a dangerous adventure to protect its secrets from falling into the wrong hands.

79. A group of adventurous kids forms a secret club and embarks on a mission to solve a series of mysterious events plaguing their neighborhood during summer break.

80. A teenager moves to a new town at the end of the school year, and gets a summer job, but they had no idea what they were in for.

81. A retired rock-climber and expedition leader ventures into the wilderness on a solo expedition, testing their survival skills, and hoping to prove their fitness. 

82. A mischievous pair of siblings embark on a mission to solve a local legend, leading them to uncover a hidden treasure and restore the town's forgotten history.

83. Two best friends stumble upon a time-traveling device during a summer camping trip, taking them on an extraordinary journey through different historical eras.

84. A young street performer with extraordinary talents finds herself caught up in a whirlwind adventure when she catches the attention of a mysterious talent scout, leading her on a journey through the city's vibrant arts scene and unexpected encounters.

85. A group of neighbors form a detective club and set out to solve a series of mysterious disappearances in their city during the sweltering summer days, uncovering a hidden criminal network.

Fun summer lists

For this final set of summer writing prompts, I challenge you to make a quick list on each prompt and see what ideas emerge. 

86. Make a list of the top ten best (or worst!) things about visiting a water park.

87. Outline the most essential qualities needed for a summer camp counselor. (Consider how this might be different if kids made the list? HA!)

88. List the ten most fun outdoor games to play during summer.

89. What are the best treats to have during hot summer months? Ice cream? Ice pops? Mojitos? (for those of age, of course!)

90. Essential wardrobe staples for summer. (Again, this would be interesting to compile for different types and ages of people!)

91. Make a list of the top ten best or worst places to visit in the summer.

92. Best movies to watch during the summer. 

93. A deserted island packing list.

94. Best or worst things to ride/ eat/ play at an amusement park or state fair. 

95. Favorite summer swimming holes.

96. List your top ten songs about summer. (Put on a few for inspiration!)

97. Favorite summer snack foods for road trips. 

98. Summer holidays ranked. (Challenge level: look up the summer holidays in a different country!)

99. List the ten essential components of a dream summer break.

100. Ten must-see hikes or waterfalls or parks in your area—perfect for a summer outing!

Summer writing prompts: now you try! 

Give these summer-themed writing prompts a try and see if you don't find yourself enjoying these warm summer days even more!

Which prompt above brings back summer memories for you? Share in the comments

PRACTICE

Choose one of the prompts above and set your timer for 15 minutes. Write as quickly as you can, playing with the ideas and language. Don't overthink it. 

When finished, share your practice in the Pro Practice Workshop here. And take a look at few other writers' work too, leaving an encouraging word. Not a member? We'd love to have you along this summer! Check it out here

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Sue Weems is a writer, teacher, and traveler with an advanced degree in (mostly fictional) revenge. When she’s not rationalizing her love for parentheses (and dramatic asides), she follows a sailor around the globe with their four children, two dogs, and an impossibly tall stack of books to read. You can read more of her writing tips on her website.

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