Week 4: Write for 5 right now

Photo 1 -from a magazine from long ago and unfortunately I have no photographer to credit at this point.

Photos 2 – from Creative Commons CC0

Hi kids,

Hope you didn’t have any green beer last night. If you did, I don’t want to hear about it. And let’s face it, you wouldn’t be up at 8am now, would cha?

These weeks are rolling by as if 7 days are wrapped into two. Don’t you feel that way? Here we are at Week 4 of Write for 5 our lives flashing before our eyes.

I guess I’d have to have a following of thousands and thousands to have the kind of participation that would be thrilling. Still, it is exciting for me to read whatever anyone submits and I’m super grateful for anyone who takes the time to play along.  It is true that interaction is what blogs are supposed to be about, right?

I’m wondering if you’ve noticed anything about your process or about how things come to you once you actually start writing. That would be interesting to hear about.


If you’ve participated before, you know the routine.  If not, here are the guidelines:

·         I post a photo (or two) above at 8am on Saturday morning. Like now!

·         You take as much time as you need to look at those photos, (above)  then choose one.

·         When you’re ready to write, set the timer for five minutes.

·         When you’re done, you post your results in the “Leave a Reply” box below.

If you need to see last week’s submissions, please go to this post and scroll down to the comments:

·         Five minutes goes by super fast. In a blink really. As long as it takes the kettle to boil. But, as I’ve said before, this is really about revving up the imagination more than it is about writing. Think of it as the appetizer for the main course: your “real” writing. Don’t think about it at all actually. Just get at it and see what comes.

·         Form is open: poetry, CNF, Flash fiction. Or whatever.

·         On Monday, I’ll let you know whose writing touched me in some way. Then, I choose a book for that writer (no matter where they are in the world). I pick one of my own books and mail it to you with a card and a note.  It’s an awesome way to cull my books, and to give someone a nice surprise.

Good luck. Give it a try!  You’ve got until Sunday (let’s say 11pm) to post your results but you don’t have to wait. Just stick your piece in the comments when you’re ready.

Let the free associating begin. Let the creative wizardry unfold. Let the subconscious rise to the occasion.


  1. Is this really a photograph? It looks like a playful Vermeer painting. I just wish I were there, flipping my skirt past some pantalons, with chubby geese and herding dog. The geese look like domestic birds, meat birds, but of course I don’t want them to be meat birds. Maybe they are egg birds. My mother loved geese, but it seemed mostly because of their butts when they walked. No mention of the part when they go in the oven. So these geese are out for a stroll, not the stroll of the condemned, but the stroll of entertainers. They group very close together. I wonder if they hiss like the wild geese that hunt snails in my backyard. The dog looks very accustomed to them. No thrill of being close to geese, just a concern about stragglers. How does a dog become that way?

    1. Marjorie,
      Thanks for adding to the mix.
      ‘So these geese are out for a stroll, not the stroll of the condemned, but the stroll of entertainers.” That’s a great line. Love that line.
      Do you really have wild geese that hunt snails in your backyard?

  2. I just want to tell you that I have found that words inspire me more than pictures, so for this one I wrote down some words and took it from there. The conservative voice that emerged surprised even me!

    ALSO, I received my book, Breathing the Page. Thank you.
    I opened it at random, hoping for ‘instant inspiration” and was given
    “All lines depend on years of effort.”
    So true. Hope I have lived with enough awareness to be able to compose a few worthy lines.

    1. HI Elaine, Interesting process. I’m such a visual person that I forgot that, of course, not everyone is and that makes sense. I’m glad you found a way around that. I like providing the images, precisely because there are no words and therefore, I feel that I’m not directing anyone in any direction, except the direction of what their own mind conjures up. I can understand how that might not work as well for some but you’ve managed with great flair.
      Glad the book arrived and with “instant inspiration” no less.

  3. Oh for the good old times when a young woman and her dog could bring the geese safely home at the end of the day. No cars to worry about, no artists taking over old barns for their avant-garde creations. Just hunting for needed food, antlers a sign of a kill that fed a family for a winter. A barn a place for animals to feed and rest. Sounds and smells of the country invigorated us before gasoline fumes and unending traffic clogged our country lanes. Progress, thy name is problematic!

    1. Progress they name is problematic indeed!

      My favourite line was no artists taking over old barns for their avant-garde creations…” That made me laugh. I think a lot of us feel this way – not about the artists – about the loss of innocence and rural living and a simpler, slower pace. You should try watching that show on Knowledge Network, Edwardian garden (?) where the actors/participants have to live and cook and garden and make bread and mead and tend animals (then kill them) as they did back during Edwardian times or Tudor times or… I love that show.

      1. I have watched the show several times and all I could think of was HOW HARD THEY HAD TO WORK! Love the romance of it all, but would not want to go there.

        1. To answer your first question. Nope. Haven’t done the Camino. It appeals to me only if I get to check in to luxury every night with a sauna, a whirpool, thick robes and someone to make me dinner. A friend did it and when I heard about the SNORING in the shared dorms or whatever they called that, thinking about that, after a long day of walking, just did me in. I had a bad experience with a SNORER once in a hostel in London and I never want to experience that again. Ha ha. If I had the right company to accompany me, my mind could be changed, perhaps.
          And, as for Edwardian Garden, I agree. The romantic notion, like always, is way better than the reality would have been back then.

  4. Freddy, your entire life focuses on the art of the vignette. Have you ever noticed that? You haven’t been to a country garden much less the tundra, yet you insist on hanging antlers in your home? Big game hunter? You’ve never even killed a spider in the bathtub. Who is it that you hope to impress with all these twee scenes?

    Yes, of course, I did like the bed and its gigantic window overlooking the neighbour’s trees. It was luxurious and decadent to have windows without cover when we were- well, never mind that now. It’s over and we shouldn’t revisit the best times because the worst times were much more frequent.

    How the hell did you get that car in here? Ah, well, your brother is a fool to have helped you carry it up the ladder, piece by piece. I hope you gave him some money for his time. Why? He needs it, that’s why, and if you weren’t so intent on creating a still life, you’d have noticed how much help your brother needs with his frantic life.

    I’m not being dramatic or overly dramatic, but I agree that yelling at you isn’t proving my point. I’ll be going now. Perhaps I should say my good-bye in terms you’ll better understand.

    Exit, stage right.

    1. That’s funny! Freddy is like one of those Avant-garde artists that Elaine (above) refers to….sort of. I love the ending and that we’re drawn into a conversation between two people we can’t see but just with these few lines we conjure up what they must look like, where they’re standing when she speaks to him, where they were when they were, well, never you mind. Very clever. Thanks Jo-Anne.

  5. * I can type 90 wpm so that’s why mine might seem long. Not bragging. Just the facts

    If things hadn’t been so desperate back home. I never would have had that crazy idea that I should set off on that pilgrimage, the Camino de Santiago. I never would have been sitting in that bar. I never would have been sucked into that shooter game, and lost. And that guy, he won. So it meant that I had to walk his ducks, his geese, whatever the heck they were, for 10 miles, across the countryside starting in Sarria or whatever that small town in France was.

    He made me get dressed up in that Little Bo Peep outfit and carry that staph and everywhere I went, along the trails, along the roadsides in the countryside, cars would be honking, and I really couldn’t believe that those ducks would just follow me, like they were mesmerized, or hungry. We walked and pretty soon I stopped feeling embarrassed and just felt like this is so wild and crazy and fun and I took in the beauty of the countryside and I met these other pilgrims along the way and they joined in like they were the caboose on my train with our honky passengers.

    We found a farmer along the way and he came out and gave me some grains so I could just keep moving and every once in a while, I ‘d just throw the grains over my shoulder, for good luck, and to feed the ducks and every once in a while, we’d pose for photographs and later that day, when the guy I’d lost the bet to came and picked up his geese, we went back to another bar and I didn’t have to pay for a single one of my drinks. All along the trail, I’d become a bit of a celebrity. Crazy duck lady. Little Bo Peep reincarnated.

    *whose next?

  6. That goofy lady has done it this time. I tried to tell her that if you feed one duck, then all of his friends will expect you to feed them. But did she listen? No. She thinks that just because I am a dog, that she is not supposed to understand the common sense advice I give her. I am getting tired of these parades, but, unless I can find another meal ticket, then I am stuck with the lady. I should have wagged my tail faster when that gay couple was looking at rescue dogs. But no, I had to play it cool, and now I am trying not to step in duck poop. Does she even know where she is going? The garage-painting studio is over there, and ducks are not allowed inside.

    1. Love that it’s from the dog’s viewpoint. Love the line, “I should have wagged my tail faster when that gay couple was looking at rescue dogs.” Not to stereotype or anything. ha ha

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