Each week, we issue a writing prompt to our own staff, guest contributors, and readers like you. We welcome guest submissions, so if you’re interested in being featured or regularly contributing to the site, email your responses to kelaine.conochan [at] thepromptmag.com.
Look, it’s no secret. People are terrible. This isn’t some kind of breaking news. But it is an important vocabulary lesson.
According to Wikipedia, it is the general hatred, distrust or contempt of the human species or human nature.
According to Dictionary.com, it is a noun, of Greek origin, meaning hatred, dislike, or distrust of humankind.
But according to Mike Mastrantuono, Prompt Superfan, misanthropy is the clear choice for a writing prompt. You see, Mike won this year’s NCAA bracket challenge, and as part of his prize, he got to choose this week’s writing prompt. And despite how much we love Mike, we also hate him because he is humanrompts, . Such is the conundrum of being a misanthrope.
It turns out that misanthropy is a pretty great writing prompt, what with people being mercilessly awful and all. With the civilized world looking more and more uncivilized with every passing day. With people being the cause of so many atrocities in the world.
Humans are very much the worst. The undisputed champs in shittiness. In fact, mosquitos are the only species that even came close. But ultimately, they scored a few points in the positive column because they do the world a service, killing us with dengue, West Nile virus, yellow fever, malaria, and Zika. So, touché mosquitos. We underestimated you.
So if you feel the way we do—that you REALLY hate your own kind—or if you fancy yourself a humanitarian and want to defend your fellow humans, we want to hear from you. Just send us your original 400-700 word response to Misanthropy. And as always, we’ll print the best submissions.