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Prompt to Page with Marcia Thornton Jones

Each month, we interview a published writer who shares their favorite writing prompt. Whether you’re just getting started or have written for years, you’ll find ideas and advice to inspire you and help you become a better writer.

Prompt to Page is brought to you in partnership with the Carnegie Center for Literacy and Learning.

Listen to Episode 16

For our sixteenth episode, we talk to Marcia Thornton Jones, author of more than 135 books for children. Marcia describes her own complicated relationship to writing prompts and how she eventually realized that “every writer writes from prompts.”

She explains that “something prompted every one of us to sit down and pour words onto the page. It could have been a smell or an aroma that automatically transports us back to a memory, or it could be a snippet of dialogue that we overhear, or it could be our desire to understand some kind of idea or behavior or character behavior or a big life idea. Whatever it was, something compels us to make sense of our world through the art of writing.”

Marcia shares the process she has developed for using writing prompts in her classes. She asks students to complete a pre-prompt prompt, a craft-oriented writing prompt, and a post-prompt prompt.

Listen to the complete episode to find out how to incorporate these techniques into your writing process.

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About Marcia Thornton Jones

Headshot of Marcia Thornton Jones, a white woman with blond hair and brown eyes. She is wearing glasses, smiling, and looking off to the side.

Marcia Thornton Jones has traditionally published more than 135 books for children with sales totaling more than 43 million copies worldwide. Her works include Woodford Brave, Ratfink, Champ, and Writing Kids Books: The Ultimate Guide. She co-authored seven popular series including “Keyholders” and “The Adventures of the Bailey School Kids.”

She is also the co-author of the re-imagined graphic novel series “Adventures of the Bailey School Kids” published by Graphix by Scholastic Inc.

Marcia lives in Lexington, Kentucky, where she teaches writing and is the coordinator of Carnegie Center’s Author Services, including the Author Academy, mentoring, and manuscript review services.