M.E. Wood ran a website for writers wanting to write for over 15 years and a writing prompt blog for about half that time.
100 Prompts for Writers Who Love Zombies
For over six years, I have updated a list of weekly writing prompts devoted to various topics. One of my favorite pastimes is watching zombie movies and television shows like The Walking Dead and Fear the Walking Dead. I decided to link two of my favorite things together and create a list of zombie writing prompts. My goal was to create 100—and I did it!
Note: You are free to use these prompts within your creative writing but please do not post them on your website; provide a link to this page instead. Many thanks.
Writing Prompts 1 to 20
- It is a zombie apocalypse. You have to sacrifice three of "your" people to survive. Write about who they would be and why. No martyrs here -- you must sacrifice three people.
- Make a list of 50 items that you would have in your apocalypse survival guide.
- Your topic is: the Zombie War of 2026. Write a 12 line poem (divide into stanzas or not) and include one plural within each line.
- Make a list of 25 objects around the house that can potentially be a weapon to kill a zombie. When you are done write a scene for each object with a main character killing a zombie with it.
- You have been on your sailboat for the last three weeks and are unaware of the zombie apocalypse, that has been going on for the last ten days, until you and your first mate pull into shore and are attacked.
- What is your first weapon of choice to carry around with you during a zombie apocalypse? Include at least three reasons why it is the best choice. What would you use as your back up weapon?
- You break into the local pharmacy for three necessary supplies. Along the way to picking them up you kill seven zombies. Write in detail your journey from the moment you enter the pharmacy until you get your three items and leave.
- You open the back door to let in your beloved dog only to find out it is now a zombie and wants to eat you. Write through your emotions as your determine how to take care of the business at hand.
- Mark Winters is a kick-ass zombie fighter. He also happens to be in a wheelchair. Write a short story about Mark including at least three different zombie kills. It's up to you whether or not you want to include the back-story on how he came to be in a chair.
- Her name is Hope. Just Hope. And zombie killing is her game. Before the Apocalypse her game was actually designing games from the ground up. Her most popular? You guessed it, Zombie Killing Machine. Who says you can't apply games to real life.
- While hiking in a remote area, a group of three friends happen upon a small village where the villagers appear to be in a restful sleep. Withing six hours they are fighting for their lives against flesh eating zombies. Cut off from the outside world, what will they do to survive?
- George Vilkenson is a lawyer for one of the top tech firms in the country. After he wins a case for them they send him on a trip to a remote resort. When he returns he does not feel quite right. What starts off as the flu progresses to a life threatening illness that has his doctors stumped. He dies a gruesome bloody death in his hospital bed bleeding all over eight staff members who were trying to save him. By the end of the day they all have similar flu like symptoms but instead of progressing like George they all get an voracious appetite for warm raw meat.
- Marcy is standing at line at the butchers to pick up a rump roast and a half a chicken. There are three people in front of her and five people behind. In one hand is her phone which she keeps glancing at and in her other are her car keys. Her purse is strung over her right forearm. There is a loud scream behind the counter as Mac (the butcher) chops off his assistants arm and begins chewing on it madly. When a woman in front of Marcy screams the butcher looks up with painfully red eyes and lunges over the counter to...
- In front of you are five zombies. Behind you, a body of water. You do not know how to swim. You have three options before you for a weapon. A fan rake, a screwdriver, and a frying pan. You can only reach one of them before being attached. Make your choice.
- Padme and Lucas are your best friends from grade school. One night while you are sitting around in the basement eating junk food and playing video games Padme asks, "If there was a zombie Apocalypse do you think I would survive? And would you still be my friend?" Write about your response, Lucas's response, and Padme's counter reaction.
- You are trapped on a roof top: three scenarios of escape are open to you. Pick one and write a scene about your attempted escape. 1. Take the roof top ladder and extend it over to one of the neighboring building's rooftop. 2. Jump to one of the lower buildings at least twenty five feet below. 3. Take your chance on the rooftop until the zombies die out.
- There have been mini zombie outbreaks occurring for over ten years. The government has been doing an excellent job of keeping it contained and covering it up. Until now. Miles Green and Angela Parsons are professional zombie cleaners. Their current task is taking a team into Birmingham, Alabama where an outbreak has already killed off another team.
- The zombie apocalypse has been raging on for two years. Food is scarce. You happen upon an old and empty farmhouse with a cold room that still has stores in it including 1 jar of jam, 3 potatoes, one can of beets and one can of beef stew. Write a short scene about finding these items with the focus being on how you will open the cans since you do not have a can opener.
- My father is a zombie. Mom pushed him down the basement steps and now he's locked down there. For the most part we try to ignore him. Some times my mom will throw small animals down there for him -- she doesn't think I know -- but the excited sounds of a zombie chowing down are hard to miss -- I was an A student, I figured it out pretty easily. I know a lot more than she thinks and I have seen a lot more than any fifteen year should. My birthday is tomorrow, if I make it. But first I have to make it through today...
- We are on flight 248 that just came out of Canada and landed in New York. We have been sitting on the tarmac for three hours. Pretty much everyone on the plane has some kind of phone and has been watching the world unravel. We are told that on board the plane is the safest place to be. Some of us are happy with that, some of us are not.
Writing Prompts 21 to 40
- Mandy and Lou are at a masquerade party in Soho when some of the guests start acting a little weird. Write a short story about the death or survival of Mandy and Lou.
- Jonathan and Meg have been married one year, as an anniversary gift he accidentally turns her into a zombie with something his boss game him at work.
- Make a list of twenty people you would turn to during a zombie Apocalypse and why.
- My would you be a good person to have on Team Human?
- Write three scenarios when it would be socially acceptable to kill a human who has not been zombified
- If you were bitten, how would you want the people in your group to take care of you?
- Lewis and Arron are best friends. They lived next door to one another while they attended grade school and highschool, they went off to university together, and got married to their sweethearts the same year. Write a short story about Lewis and Arron who now live in neighboring states, finding one another after a year into the zombie apocalypse.
- Make a list of 25 go to foods when foraging during a zombie apocalypse.
- What are ten reasons why dogs are great to keep around even after the world has gone to the zombies?
- What are ten reason why dogs are not great to have around in a world full of zombies?
- Dr. Malcolm Webber is in surgical room 6 performing a lap-band procedure when a nurse bursts into the room screaming. She pushes the door shut and puts the "crash"cart in front of it. What happens next?
- Mavis Louise Daniels is a florist from New Hampshire. While at a conference in New York (because all good conferences happen there silly), a strange flu starts to affect other attendants. Write Mavis's story from the moment she arrives at the conference.
- Make a list of ten vehicles that a person should keep an eye out for during a zombie apocalypse. Next to each one put at least three fine points.
- Make a list of rules to follow during a zombie apocalypse for a group of people to follow.
- Make a personal list of rules to follow during a zombie apocalypse.
- Make a list of twenty places to avoid at all costs -- next to each one put at least three negatives. When you are done rate your list from worst to absolute worst.
- Write a moral code for people during a zombie apocalypse.
- Jon and Les (short for Lesley) are stuck on a third floor apartment building surrounded by flesh eating monsters. Write a short story about Jon and Les's survival or demise (you choose, or let the story decide).
- Aimee is a nail technician. One of her clients tries to eat her, write a short scene about Aimee defending herself. Before you actually get to the action make sure Aimee has touched the defensive object she uses at least twice.
- Mark is in the kitchen when he has to kill the water delivery guy with a waffle iron -- scene or short story, go...
Writing Prompts 41 to 60
- Melinda was a small town girl who lived in a one bedroom house at the end of a quiet street with her three cat and two lovebirds. Write Melinda's zombie story.
- You have been chased into a car factory, make a list of twenty-five places to hide from zombies who have been chasing you.
- What happens when a werewolf meets a zombie?
- Who is more dead, a vampire or a zombie? Discuss.
- Don, Michael, Shannon, Tara, Thom, Luke, and Kyla are heading for Shannon's father's private plane to fly to safety. Shannon has not told them it only seats four people but it might not matter. Write the story of this group's journey to safety.
- In the Florida everglades that are two things you have to worry about eating you alive; 'gators and zombies. Write a short story in this locale being sure to highlight aspects of both but leaving the reader to decide which is worse.
- Marta is a nail technician from San Francisco. One day at work she has to stab a customer in the eye with a nail file. Write Marta's and her her fellow salon team's story.
- Make a list of twenty-five things that attract the walking dead.
- Sally, Lynn, and Colleen are sisters just over a year a part. They are trapped, in order for two to survive one must die (or they all die). Does one of them sacrifice themselves or do the stronger of the two sacrifice the weakest link. Write their story.
- Five marines get separated from their group during a training exercise. When they return to camp things are not like they were before.
- Frank and Deborah Stabler are a power couple. He was a doctor, she was a real estate agent. From the moment they met ten years ago their relationship has centered around being active together. They enter at least two marathons a year and train together. When people started eating one another in the streets, surviving became another thing they were good at doing together. Write Frank and Deb's story.
- Mike was a mechanic. He's good with a wrench. He can fix a car in a pinch or splash some zombie brains when cornered. Mostly he remains hidden in the bowels of Dale's Body Shop (Dale was his boss). He was perfectly happen minding his own business until Mandy drove her truck through the front door and brought eight zombies with her. Write about the day Mike and Mandy meet.
- If you had to be a zombie what kind would like to be? What would be the worst kind?
- Ten reasons why being a zombie might not be such a bad thing.
- Are there any members of your friends/family circles that you would keep as pets if they were turned into zombies? Make a list and elaborate on each person.
- You have found the following seven items in a corner store: canned peas, biscotti, a box with a packet of Kraft cheese but no pasta, marshmallows, a can of sardines, a jar of pickles, and bag of croutons. You have to make a meal for three people. Use the ingredients to cook up a dish and serve.
- You, Marcy, and Jen have been driving around in a yellow Hummer for three months. You never knew one another pre-apocalypse but you are like best friends who have known one another forever. Write about how you all met and why you are so close.
- Angela was a stylist for a fashion magazine. She strongly believes that even though the world has gone to hell there is no excuse for not looking good. Write Angela's story.
- Write a scene about Chad. He runs into a music store and is followed by three of the walking dead. Write about Chad's confrontation with each one and how he killed them with a different instrument.
- Write a zombie story where an outbreak takes place at some point in history.
Writing Prompts 61 to 80
- Milo is sitting as his computer. He is surfing the net and has his iPod plugged into a speaker and blaring loudly. His back is to the door but he can see a reflection of the door frame in the monitor, not that he is really paying attention to it other than it being annoying. As he is typing a text he thinks he hears what sounds like moaning. He flips the sound off the speaker and looks over his shoulder to the door. Nothing. With the music back on he returns his attention to his text which he changes, "weirding myself out with house noises". He hears the moaning again and quickly flips off the speaker. Nothing. "I'm losing it!" He hits send and notices a figure in the doorway reflection. Write Milo's story.
- Margie is putting together the fixings for a chicken casserole when she sees her neighbor Lisa go running across her back yard followed by her husband Bill who looks like his torso is covered in dark mud. The Carsons are a bit strange so she shakes it off and puts the dish in the oven. A bang on the patio doors makes her jump and she burns her hand on one of the oven racks. She curses, close the door, and walks over to the locked doors expecting to see bird feathers stuck to the glass as per usual but instead she sees half a bloody hand print. Write Margie's story.
- Alaska Allen has been hitchhiking across Canada for the last six weeks. While in the small town of Wawa (population 2966 - approx.) she stops at a little "truck" stop to order a burger. She overhears two men in front of her talking about a violent outbreak in New York and Toronto. Write Alaska's story.
- Jordan Combs has been a zombie for 30 minutes. Write his zombie story.
- A dog that ran away from home enters an abandoned hospital and gets into some awry material in the basement. In a few days the dog becomes sick and returns home where it dies. A few hours later the dog is attaching the family and turning them into flesh eating creatures. Write the dog's story.
- A new age of suicide terrorist is upon us. Instead of carrying bombs, they are carrying a virus and induces zombieism. Write the tale of three terrorist and what countries they enter to zombify.
- We have all heard the story of Roswell, New Mexico and the supposed alien cover up story. The truth is not that they were covering up an alien attack. The alien story was leaked to cover up a zombie outbreak and the real reason that Area 51 exists. Write the real story.
- "Three little zombies all in a row. Which one shall I knock off the cliff first."
- "What do you mean they, 'Just changed'?" asked Jamie. "I'm mean one minute they were laughing and joking like normal and the next they were gnawing on Bill Jacobs. I ran here when...
- Rachel and Dean always had a romantic ideal of war. It did not change much when we were forced to kill our neighbors, our friends, and members of our family. Rachel and Dean were the non-leaders of our group of fifteen. You know, the kind that tell you what to do but then wash their hands of it. They were joined at the hip since their parents moved next store to one another when she was six and he was seven. Their passion for one another kept them alive and disease free but I often wondered if it would be their undoing. Who am I? I am their...
- Meg, Josh, and Steph have been hiding out in the Portland Bank for the last five days since a viscious outbreak has cleared out most of the town of their living inhabitants. During the day they gather what supplies they need and return before dusk to lock themselves in the safety deposit box area. Write their story.
- Sneaking into houses when I was a kid was actually kind of fun. I never knew it would become a skill to help me when I became an adult. Being sneaky, is the reason I am still alive. I find it's better to do it alone than with a friend. If the friend gets into trouble then you either get killed because they run to you for help or because you feel a pull to help them. I hang with a group of eight but I work best alone. And this life, it's all work and no play... Write who this is and continue their story.
- Danny is teaching his eight year old brother how to fish while trying to keep an eye out for a hidden attack. What key points must he teach to make sure his brother will be able to feed himself should anything happen to him. Write this fishing scene being sure to include the main points, Danny's concerns, as well as an endearing exchange between the two brothers. If you do not know anything about fishing -- fake it.
- If you lost a limb during a zombie attack or some other freak accident during the Z/A would you rather it was an arm or a leg? Write 250 words on which option you would prefer and why?
- What are five items you look for at every gas station and grocery store you pass no matter how much time you have?
- What is the best way to ration food? Go through your cupboards and make a plan.
- Make a list of ten things you could use to make a light with.
- Jack and Alex are long distance runners. They are in a marathon and as they near one of the check points they see a commotion in the crowd as it fans out into the road in front of them. People are covered in blood and screaming. As they get closer they see an old man gnawing on the leg of a fellow runner as she screams. Not far away from this three youths are chowing down on a mother and child. What do Jack and Alex do?
- You and your younger brother are at school (high school or college, your choice) when one of the supply teachers starts attacking the students in classroom across the hall...
- When the world went for a crapper, Alex, Nathan, Lewis, Angela, Kristine and Joely were over 1000 feet above ground in the CN Tower's 360 restaurant setting up for the day's crowd. They had an abundance of fine cuisine and wine in the beginning but food stores were getting low and they had to start thinking about how they were going to restock and whether this really was the best place to stay. Write their story.
Writing Prompts 81 to 100
- They have been spreading over the continents for decades, biding their time, putting up with harsh chemicals, surviving where nothing else survives. Today, dandelions are transmitting a unique pollen that kills people within 30 minutes of exposure and the exposure is high. Within four hours they are rising again to attack those not affected. Beware of any allergy sufferers in your family. Write this story and the final outcome.
- Mauna Kea is an inactive volcano volcano but for the last two weeks it has been emitting a green haze but no one has been overly concerned. A couple of hikers are exposed and begin acting strange on the way down. One gets killed in a fall but he does not stay dead for long...
- Abbie is dying from a rare form of leukemia. Before the zombie outbreak she had given up treatment and resigned herself to dying a quiet death on her own terms. With people dropping around her like flies she has surprised herself by her intense desire to now want to live. Write Abbie's story.
- 3 zombies gimp into a bar...
- Maddie Jones is in love, damn it. She can't deal with flesh thirsty non-deads constantly trying to break down her door and gnaw on her and her boyfriend of three weeks. Her goal? Find a safe haven to continue the love-fest she had started before the world went to hell in a hand basket.
- There were signs everywhere in the news weeks before it was known. Mysterious outbreaks in small communities. Strange accidents on trains, plains, and buses. But no one was really paying attention. No one except Miles Kroger, an Internet news junkie from Albuquerque, New Mexico. Write Miles story beginning with his Internet addiction and how he first noticed the signs.
- Tasha and Natalie Masterson are sisters married to the same man and living in the same polygamist community they grew up in. When a strange sickness devastates the community the women must decide to listen to the man who has controlled their lives for the last seven years or trust what their guts are telling them.
- Miles and J. J. are on an extended road trip of partying, women in every town, and zombie killing. But there comes a point when you have to stop fooling around and grow up.
- "Don't make me rip your brains out Lucy!" cried Wendy as you pushed her best friend away from her. She grabbed the rake from the wall and held it out in front of her hoping to keep Lucy further than arm's length away. Lucy's eyes were vacant and icy. Her mouth seeped saliva like a dog waiting for a bone. In this case, Wendy was the the bone. When she agreed to a sleep over she never thought she'd be killing off her friends one by one.
- Los Angeles has become a maze with living people trying to make their way through the streets without getting their innards taken away from them. Nancy, Lewis, Jonas, Steffie, and Carlos have managed to keep going since day one. They don't pick up any extra people and they don't leave one of their behind. In walks Tara and her twin sister Helen and their perfect plan for surviving the apocalypse has gone to...
- For decades people have been worried about a virus that would cause zombism in humans. They never considered that it would be their pets! Write a story about Fido and Fifi gone mad -- rabies not allowed. These are true zombies rising from the dead.
- Mark Sloan, a quarter back on (insert name of your favorite team name) is on a bus going to Montana when things with his mates go awry. Instead of running with the ball he's running from his team.
- Michelle Bruen makes beer for a living. When her customers start acting a bit strange (strange brew, get it?) her and her son Micheal have to fight for their lives against a town of drunk zombies. Ok, they don't have to be drunk.
- Zombie Obstacle course is one of the top reality shows on television for four seasons running. 24 teams of two sign up (including signing a death waiver) to compete against one another to the finish line. The last team standing with no bites or infection wins!
- Freya was a fan of tie-die and poutine. Jacob was into loafers and apple beer. Separately they did not have an ounce of a chance for survival but together they had the power to smush some mushy brains and find food and water along the way. Write a short story in their honor.
- Marsha Johnson was a producer of a 30 minute nightly comedy news show starring Manning Grey. They have been stuck in the studio for fifteen days with ten other people. While Marsha can't stand Manning as a person, she respects him as her boss so when he decides it's time they leave the nest she agrees to follow before things get even worse in their little sardine can of a hideaway that is running dangerously low on provisions and sanity. Write their story.
- Write a short story about a man or woman who has decided that solitude is their best mode of survival.
- You would think flesh eaters would be enough of an apocalypse, but no; not only do we have to deal with becoming infected we have to deal with natural disasters like daily earthquakes, flooding, and killer locusts. You know you want to, go ahead and write an over the top end of days story with lots of natural disasters and flesh eaters.
- Write 500 word story with the following words: unstable, political, truth, crevices, alarm systems, frozen, supermarket, smoking, withdrawal, daycare, vitality, splendor, destroyer.
- Mark, Jennie, and Thomas have been hiding out in an old coal mine outside of town. Things are becoming increasingly tense between the three in such small quarters. They need to decide their next step. Write their story with their current living situation and provide flashbacks on how they arrived there and some of the things they have had to deal with before following through with their new decision. Don't forget the zombies.
Thank you for visiting my article featuring my zombie writing prompts. I hope you were able to write a short story or two using one of them. This article was an ongoing project for about four months. Every Sunday I would add three to ten prompts depending on how creative I was feeling. This was a fun writing project in itself and I am glad I decided to stretch myself and undertake it. I hope you find it useful to your writing practice. Leave a warm fuzzy to get me through the apocalypse.
Allycayy101 on March 17, 2019:
Who likes the show TWD, Z Nation?
Allycayy101 on March 17, 2019:
I'm working on this story called walking dead survival story, and it's about this girl named Beth that survives the apocalypse by herself, and she comes across some people who are willing to help, and she falls in love, and bla bla bla, I'll be adding more things to the story, but I'll be needing ideas! Can y'all help?
Nevil on November 13, 2018:
As good as God's
Pie on March 15, 2018:
I have a zombie story that i have been working on:
Sitting in a cramped car going who knows where can be crappy. sitting in that car not knowing what was to come is even worse.
"Mom, do they have any kids our age?" I asked. We were going to visit my moms favorite sorority sister from college.
"Yes, three I think. There's Johnny, he's 20 I think. Ethan is just a little older than Thomas and there is one other, I can't remember the name, just a few months younger than you Benny." My mom was so excited she was practically bouncing off the car walls, and it was very obvious. My brother Thomas was 18 and I just turned 16, meaning that our mystery child was 15. We passed a tiny town, that I didn't catch the name of. It had a fire station, a grocery store, a school house, a gas station and a video store. My parents were listening to some country song about fishing in the dark, and I didn't really want to listen, so I put on my headphones and turned on my favorite Eminem song, Rap God. I didn't notice when we turned onto a road until my dad stopped to ask for directions.
"Excuse my young sir, but could you point us in the direction of SunnyCreek farms?"
The boy got up from his produce stand and pointed up a dirt driveway.
"Right up there. You must be the Cotters. I'm Johnny."
My mother grinned. Nice to meet you Johnny. I'm Leslie, and this is my husband Rick. Back there are our two sons Benny and Tommy."
Johnny waved at us.
My dad turned up the driveway and drove for about 5 minutes until he came to a white 2-storie house with a tin roof. It was very nice on the outside, and I assumed it would be even nicer on the inside.
We got out of the car and were greeted by a woman who I assumed to be my moms friend Jessie, a man and another boy. Ethan, I assumed.
"Leslie!" Jessie exclaimed. The hugged and Ethan cam over to shake mine and Thomas's hands. Johnny came up the road behind us.
"Why don't you boys go find Cam?" Jessie's husband suggested.
"C'mon. Let's go." Ethan started walking out towards a barn in the back. "You know, Cam is probably the toughest person in this town."
"I could take Cam." I said confidently.
"No one takes Chamomile." Said Ethan.
"Chamomile?" I asked
We saw someone hop down off a horse.
Then I saw Cam.
Eytecard on January 27, 2018:
Cheers this really helped me out, I used two of them to start my story.
Larry Rankin from Oklahoma on July 30, 2015:
Great prompts. When the zombie apocalypse comes, I'm headed to an island:-)
Lorelei Cohen on June 26, 2015:
Zombies have become so very popular. My daughter and her husband enjoy this theme very much and include it in a number of their holiday celebrations. She laughed the other day telling me they were sitting watching tv and she said to him, It's okay if you eat me if I die before you and he turned to her and said that he loved her so much that he wouldn't be able to. Only a zombie lover could understand the true sentiment in that statement. What a fantastic idea for writing prompts.
Colleen on October 23, 2014:
This is great! Love it!!
victoriuh on March 19, 2013:
Love this lens! I love writing and zombies (and Zombieland) so it is a win win win.