birds in a barrel's mission is to release creative nonfiction into the wild.

40 Days & 40 Writes is its first project.

So... how did it go?


First, congratulations! Half of you wrote more than 30 of the 40 days. One of you even hit all 40. That's nuts. Collectively, the Starlings flock wrote more than 180,000 words ... the equivalent of a 700-page novel.

If you would like to know more about the structure that underpins 40 Days & 40 Writes, feel free to read more about it here. As writers, teachers, students and thinkers, if you look at this model and have any thoughts about it or ideas to share, please let me know with a reply email, or in the survey.

Speaking of the survey, please take this surveyJust do it now and then I won't have to hound you about it. Because I totally will. 

In addition to your feedback, there are a few other ways that, if you desire, you can help with the growth of the 40 Days & 40 Writes. You can:

Suggest it to your friends. I am keeping an interest list for Spring 2018 flock. I'm also curious about moderating / adapting this program for groups, like a class or a church group and open to your ideas. 

Pay it forward. This isn't an expensive program, but your donations will help cover the web hosting, MailChimp fees, and Google Apps development that created the data analysis, standings and booklets. If you'd like to make a financial contribution toward these efforts, well, thank you

Send me other prompts. It may sound silly, but coming up with new writing prompts was the hardest part of building this. Have a random thought? Send it to me any time at

Volunteer. If you have time, knowledge or expertise to share, I would love that. (Would someone like to design a T-shirt, for instance?) One of the Canary flock writers, Russ, has been invaluable for the last two months, posting your work to the blog so quickly that I call him Russ-o-matic. 

Suggest a partner. In 2018 I’ll be looking for people or organizations to team up with to create writing prompts with specific aims, e.g., fiction, memoir, therapy, student writing instruction. 

Again, thanks to all of you for being such good Starlings, and for allowing me to support you in your writing practice.

Signing off