Welcome to my first post for the Author Toolbox Blog Hop! Today I am going to be presenting some of my all-time favourite tips for generating writing prompts: using tarot cards. I’ve already shown you how to use them to create three-act plot structures and expanding upon that into Freytag’s Pyramid but there’s so much more you can do with them. Using tarot to beat writer’s block and just rediscover the fun of writing as play is easy and endlessly rewarding. So let’s get started!
First thing’s first: you don’t have to use the standard tarot card deck. What we’re aiming for is something called aleatory writing: writing which uses a randomizer of some sort. This could be dice or cards. There are a range of storytelling dice games such as Rory’s Story Cubes, and card games designed with storytelling or writing in mind. Story Forge, and the Storymatic are the most writing-focused of the bunch.
But tarot is unique. It is a system which contains all of the core elements of character-driven narrative. The 78 cards allude to every facet of human nature and experience that you really need to try hard not to form them into a story, which is probably how they came to be used for divination in the first place!
So how do you get started with using tarot in your writing practice? We all love a good book on the writer’s craft and, thankfully, Corrine Kenner has written Tarot for Writers, the perfect primer for anyone new to this fascinating engine of prompt creation.
But what if you already know a fair bit about tarot? Kelly-Ann Maddox has a great video on what she calls “the Bardic Technique” or “Storytelling Technique” for using tarot:
Will you be using tarot as part of your writing practice? Let me know your thoughts in the comments below!