Friday, February 26, 2010

A 6-Word Memoir

Ernest Hemingway was challenged (likely a bar bet) to write a short story in exactly 6 words. He came up with this:

For Sale: Baby shoes, never worn.

How brilliant is this man?!?!

Apparently, Hemingway's "6-word story" inspired the editors of Smith Magazine to compile the 6-word memoirs of many writing talents.

A story was aired about this memoir project on National Public Radio. The compiled 6-word memoirs can be found in the new book entitled: Not Quite What I Was Planning: Six-Word Memoirs By Famous and Obscure Writers. They are really interesting to read!

Since I love a challenge, particularly a writing challenge... I HAD to come up with my own 6-word memoir. The key is, you're not supposed to over-think it... it loses some sincerity. But, as usual, I had to go through several drafts...

So, what could I write that would summarize who I am in this world... the totality of my short, but full life? I came up with a few renditions:

First came my smart-ass responses:

Without humor, it all basically blows.

What the F* is this sh*?

Seriously, don't know what I'm doing.

Then I go for the literal, especially after these past 3 days:

I'm knee deep in pooh, literally.

Then the loopy:

I don't send bad food back.

One big experiment on sleep deprivation.

She didn't drink the Kool Aid.

Then my brooding self surfaced:

Dreaming the dreams, but never delivering.

Life devoted to correcting past mistakes.

Heart always there, soul sometimes lost.

Then it started to get more 'genuine' to me:

Different than I imagined, but better.

Deserving of nothing, grateful for all.

And, after much silly brainstorming , I finally decided that this one probably says it all. My life... my memoir... in a 6 word nutshell.

Plan B was better than expected.

Want to take a stab at it too?
quote ernest hemingway Pictures, Images and Photos


Tina said...

This brilliant! Bad thing is I could pound out a page...but it would take some thought to write 6 words! How sad is that.
Here is the best I can do this morning.

Sold As Is, Absolutely No Return.

Elizabeth said...

I just don't know anything anymore.

erin said...

I don't send bad food back speaks volumes.

I also don't send bad food back. But then, that's not six words.

Alicia DiFabio said...

If I was describing ME, not my life as a whole, I WOULD absolutely use "I don't send bad food back" because that just encapsulates "me."

In fact, my husband will describe me to people who haven't met me yet as: "Kind, sometimes to a fault; totally clueless; and the type of person that will eat the wrong order instead of sending it back to the kitchen." :)

Jennie said...

I've been thinking about this for a while, and haven't quite succeeded. I like this, but think it describes most moms:

I was one thing, now another.

I wrote this description of my husband the other day:

Very smart. Bad at loading dishwasher.

Tina said...

....been thinking about your post all day!

I got another one....

Two parts vodka, one part lime.

Tanya @ TeenAutism said...

I love your final one, but I thought the sleep deprivation one was also fitting!

cameramom said...

Creativity encouraged, improvisation is the key.

Kim said...

Love the last one! Great post.

Anonymous said...

I like Plan B.

I can name that tune in 5 -

"Is it Happy Hour yet?"

Mama Deb said...

Love it!
Your first one is definitely where my mind would go first as well.

Adrian said...

I like this word "Deserving of nothing, grateful for all."

These words really motivated, great posts!

オテモヤン said...


Cinda said...

Absolutely brilliantly inspiring. Learning is painful but so necesssary.

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