I use this sheet for journal entries or quickwrites.
Students copy down the writing prompt in the space at top. As they are copying it down, this gives a minute or two to discuss the prompt, ask questions, make sure everyone understands. Then they are instructed to write neatly on the lines until time is called or all lines are filled.
They can see as they go what their score will be at any point should time be called by checking the numbers on the left side of each writing line. I find this encourages them to keep writing, find SOMETHING to say about the prompt (the point of the exercise) instead of stopping, saying "I can't think of anything to write" or similar excuse while waiting for the time to run out.