Leonard Stern and Roger Price invented the Mad Libs game in 1953. They created their own publishing company and the books were such a success that over 100 million copies have sold. Mad Libs are fill-in-the-blank stories. Players choose words – nouns, verbs, adverbs, and adjectives – to fill in blanks in a story. The result is a strange, funny, and definitely original story!

Why Play Mad Libs?

Mad Libs provide a number of benefits for those playing.

  • Mad Libs are educational.
  • They teach parts of speech.
  • They reinforce reading skills
  • Mad Libs develop the imagination.
  • Mad Libs promote creativity.
  • Mad Libs are fun!

How to Make Your Own Mad Libs Game

How to Make Your Own Mad Libs Game

Although you can purchase Mad Libs books and there are on-line Mad Libs generators, it is fun and simple to create your own. Doing so allows you to tailor the game to the age, interest, and ability level of your players. Mad Libs can be created for any subject, occasion, or age group. You can use the Web to search for any of the following:

  • Birthday Mad Libs
  • Mad Libs for Teens
  • Christmas Mad Libs (or any other holiday)
  • Star Wars Mad Libs
  • Mad Libs for Kids, Teens, and Adults
  • Wedding Mad Libs
  • Anniversary Mad Libs

Additionally, you can use any newspaper or magazine article, greeting card, book, or product description for your Mad Lib game. The reading you choose should fit the age and topic, as well as the interest level of your players. For example, your chosen reading will be vastly different for an adult group and a group of fourth graders.

How to play Mad Libs game

How to play Mad Libs game

Method #1

Write nouns, verbs, adjectives, and adverbs on notecards. Each player draws one of each type of word and must make a sentence using the words chosen. Players receive four points for each sentence created. However, if they can use their words to add on to the previous player’s sentence, they receive eight. The first person to exceed fifty points wins the game.

Method #2

Find a used children’s book at a thrift store or use one of your kid’s books. Short stories or poems both work well for Mad Libs games. Go through the story, highlighting nouns, verbs, adjectives, and adverbs. Make four lists, one each of commonly used nouns, verbs, adjectives, and adverbs on a chalkboard, large piece of paper, or poster board to replace those in the story. Have the players choose from the number of nouns, verbs, adjectives, and adverbs that will be replaced.  Read the story aloud replacing the highlighted words.

Method #3

Choose any type of writing – poem, short paragraph, or excerpt from a popular novel or classic literature – and type it up with blank spaces. Under each blank, indicate which part of speech should be used. Provide lists of nouns, verbs, adjectives, and adverbs (see our lists below) to fill in the blanks. Create one Mad Lib for each of the players and pass them out randomly. When the blanks have been filled in, have each player read their story.

Word Lists for Mad Libs

Word Lists for Mad Libs

Fit your Mad Libs game to the age level of your players when you choose the words for filling in the blanks. You want plenty of adjectives and adverbs because they are the words that add punch and humor to your Mad Libs, so we have given you an extensive list of both. The words we have listed here should work for any group of players.


Nouns are names of person, places, or things.

apple fifth scale
arithmetic finger seashore
badge flock sidewalk
basket frame sleet
basketball furniture smoke
battle geese bathtub
beast ghost nose
beetle giraffe sidewalk
beggar governor son (boy)
brain honey stage
bubble hope station
bucket income throat
cactus island throne
cannon jeans title
cattle (cow) judge toothbrush
celery lamp turkey
cellar lettuce umbrella
cloth marble underwear
coach month vacation
coast north (south, east, west) vegetable
crate ocean poison
cream patch riddle
daughter (girl) plane scale
donkey playground visitor
earthquake poison voyage
feast riddle year


Verbs are action words. You may need to change the verb you use another tense by adding –ed or –ing.

question add itch
reach allow jog
rinse bake jump
run bang jump
scatter call kick
stay chase knit
swim damage land
talk drop lock
turn end march
untie escape mix
use fasten name
vanish fix notice
visit gather obey
walk grab open
work hang pass
yawn hug pitch
yell imagine promise


Adjectives are descriptive words. They modify or tell about nouns.

abundant delightful high nutritious square
adorable dirty hollow obedient steep
agreeable drab hot obnoxious sticky
alive dry hot odd straight
angry dusty huge old-fashioned strong
beautiful eager icy orange substantial
better early immense panicky sweet
bewildered easy important petite swift
big elegant inexpensive plain tall
bitter embarrassed itchy powerful tart
black empty jealous prickly tasteless
blue faint jolly proud teeny
boiling faithful juicy puny teeny-tiny
brave famous kind purple tender
breeze fancy large purring thankful
broad fast late quaint thoughtless
broken fat lazy quick tiny
bumpy few light quiet ugliest
calm fierce little rainy ugly
careful filthy lively rapid uneven
chilly flaky long red uninterested
chubby flat loose relieved unsightly
clean fluffy loud repulsive uptight
clever freezing low rich vast
clumsy fresh lumpy rotten victorious
cold full magnificent round warm
colossal gentle mammoth salty weak
cool gifted many scary wet
creepy gigantic massive scrawny west
crooked glamorous melted screeching whispering
cuddly gray messy shallow white
curly greasy miniature short wide
curved great modern shy wide-eyed
damaged green mushy silly witty
damp grumpy mysterious skinny wooden
dead handsome narrow slow worried
deafening happy nervous small wrong
deep heavy nice soft yellow
defeated helpful noisy sparkling young
delicious helpless numerous sparse yummy


Adverbs tell how something is done. They modify (tell about) a verb, adjective, or another adjective. They frequently end in –ly.

actually famously jaggedly perfectly smoothly
almost far jealously playfully softly
always fast joyfully politely solidly
angrily fatally justly poorly sometimes
annually ferociously keenly positively soon
anxiously foolishly kindly powerfully speedily
arrogantly fortunately knowingly promptly sternly
awkwardly frankly lazily properly strictly
badly frantically less quicker successfully
bashfully freely lightly quickly suddenly
beautifully fully likely quietly surprisingly
blindly furiously limply rapidly suspiciously
boldly generally lively rarely sweetly
bravely generously loosely readily swiftly
briefly gently loudly really sympathetically
brightly gladly lovingly reassuringly tenderly
briskly gleefully madly recklessly terribly
busily gracefully merrily regularly thankfully
calmly gratefully miserably reluctantly thoughtfully
carefully greatly mockingly repeatedly tightly
carelessly greedily monthly rigidly tomorrow
certainly happily more roughly too
cheerfully hastily mortally rudely truly
clearly healthily mostly sadly truthfully
cleverly heavily naturally safely upbeat
closely helpfully nearly searchingly upward
coolly helplessly neatly sedately urgently
courageously highly nervously seemingly vainly
cruelly honestly never seldom vastly
curiously hopelessly nicely selfishly very
daintily hourly noisily separately viciously
deeply hungrily normally seriously violently
delightfully immediately not shakily warmly
dimly innocently oddly sharply weakly
dreamily instantly often sheepishly well
easily intensely only shrilly wetly
excitedly intently openly shyly wildly
extremely interestingly painfully silently wisely
fairly inwardly partially sleepily worriedly
faithfully irritably patiently slowly wrongly

Mad Libs are fun at a party, useful at school for teaching parts of speech, and serve as an excellent icebreaker at any function. Our article provides all the information necessary for endless, entertaining Mad Libs. Play on!