For the new folks around these parts, I should probably tell you about Fridays.

So, here’s the skinny: every Friday for over two years hundreds of people have joined a kind of writing flash mob over here.


We write for five minutes flat. All on the same prompt that I post here at 1 minute past midnight EST every Friday. And we connect on Twitter with the hashtag #FMFParty (short for Five Minute Friday party). In fact, starting at around 10pm EST on Thursday you’ll find a lot of writers hanging out and chatting on Twitter with this hashtag.

No extreme editing; no worrying about perfect grammar, font, or punctuation.

Unscripted. Unedited. Real.

It’s like a free write flash mob –> click to tweet this.

It started because I’d been thinking about writing and how often our perfectionism gets in the way of our words. And I figured, why not take 5 minutes and see what comes out: not a perfect post, not a profound post, just five minutes of focused writing.

So now on Fridays a group of people who love to throw caution to the wind and just write without worrying if it’s just right gather to share what five minutes buys them. While the kids are changing into their swim suits, while the pop corn is popping, while the dog is outside doing his business, while the show cuts to commercial. Just five minutes.

Your words. This shared feast.

How to Join:

It’s easy to join in, just:

  1. Check what the prompt is on my blog.
  2. Write a post in only five minutes on that topic on your blog (or in the comments below if you don’t have a blog).
  3. Link over here and invite friends to join in.
  4. Select the permalink to your post {so not your blog url but your post url}
  5. Using the blue linky tool at the bottom of my Five Minute Friday post enter your link.
  6. It will also walk you through selecting which photo you want to show up in the linky.
  7. Your post will show up in our Five Minute Friday linky.

Our most important requirement for participation: There’s really only one absolute, no ifs, ands or buts about it Five Minute Friday rule: you must visit the person who linked up before you & encourage them in their comments. Seriously. That is, like, the rule. And the fun. And the heart of this community.

(As for all other rules, we like to break ’em – just ask Gretchen).

Featured Five Minute Friday:

And every week I’ll pick a post that caught my eye and share it down there in my side bar – see where it says “Featured Five Minute Friday”? Yea -that could be you! Hop on over and visit some folk who make fireworks in just five minutes. They inspire me.

So, now be brave, set your timer, clear your head, for five minutes of free writing without worrying about getting it right.

OK, are you ready? Please give us your best five minutes on the word:::



Your story is not small or boring or ordinary. Your story isn’t tedious or silly or embarrassing. Your story is necessary. Your story is what helps me understand my story. Your story is life lived next door and across the ocean and still look here I am reflected in your story. She rocks her baby, she nurses through the night, she walks miles of carpet and cries into the baby carrier and she hears the story across keyboards and screens and reaches out with words to lift, to swaddle, to comfort.

She loses her heart and her friend and her courage and it ripples across the night into her in box and the thread unravels and winds between them, the anchor of a story in common. Words can go where arms and hugs and hearts can’t sometimes. Words can slip through the cracks of closed doors and tip toe into mail boxes and whisper a second chance, a welcome beginning again.

You tell your story every time you answer the question, “So, how’re you doing?” with more than the word, “Fine.” You tell your story when you open the door to how you really are and invite us past the laundry and into the kitchen to sit down with that chipped coffee mug and look across the table into the face of someone else’s story and hold nothing back. This is the beginning of things. This is the middle and also the end and the beginning again.

How we offer our words and the inside bits and pieces of our lives. Trusting that they will lay themselves down one plank at a time, to build a bridge for friendship and understanding to walk across.


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