How to Inspire Creative Writing with Gamefication: Dog No Cat

Toby1-e1399383130812-604x270Whether you’ve had an opportunity to write professionally, for school or even just for pure enjoyment, like every writer, you’ve probably gotten stuck for inspiration. For me, getting started with a creative writing project can be daunting when I am a loss for new ideas.

A great technique for getting the creative juices flowing is a form of gamefication. That is, take a challenging set of rules and see if you can make it work. The result is a framework that turns out to be a great way to get started. If you’re like me, you’ll also find it kind of fun.

In this example, I set out to write a poem about a dog without using any of the letters in the word cat. By forcing myself to avoid my “go-to” words, I had to think it through a little differently and explore new ways of creating word pictures.

I hope you enjoy the result!

Dog. No cat.

Dog is very fine fellow,

His eyes so shiny,

Fur so fine.

So big, romping

Running, going for prize,

Moving his bum in joy,

Look, mom, found squirrel,

Squirrel runs

Dog bums.

Love me, beg dog eyes,

Rub my hind,


Kibble is good,

No joke.

Furry guy,

Doggy bloke.

Hole? Me? Dig?

Silly you.



Bone for me?

Joy. Joy. More joy.

Wiggle bum, end follows.

Drool. Bone. Sigh.

Run some more.


Drink for me? Eyes beg.

Liquid quench in bowl,


Wish drinking were speedy.

Needs some sleep now.

Flex, sigh, deep sigh, deep dog sigh.

Move round, seeking bed zone,


1 Comment
  1. funny

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