Not Quite What I Was Planning: Six-Word Memoirs by Writers Famous and Obscure by Larry SmithDeceptively simple and surprisingly addictive, Not Quite What I Was Planning is a thousand glimpses of humanity—six words at a time.
When Ernest Hemingway famously wrote, For Sale: baby shoes, never worn, he proved that an entire story can be told using a half-dozen words. When the online storytelling magazine SMITH asked readers to submit six-word memoirs, they proved a whole, real life can be told this way, too. The results are fascinating, hilarious, shocking, and moving.
From small sagas of bittersweet romance (Found true love, married someone else) to proud achievements and stinging regrets (After Harvard, had baby with crackhead), these terse true tales relate the diversity of human experience in tasty bite-size pieces.
The original edition of Not Quite What I Was Planning spent six weeks on the New York Times bestseller list, and thanks to massive media attention—from NPR to the The New Yorker—the six-word memoir concept spread to classrooms, dinner tables, churches, synagogues, and tens of thousands of blogs. This deluxe edition has been revised and expanded to include more than sixty never-before-seen memoirs.
From authors Elizabeth Gilbert, Richard Ford, and Joyce Carol Oates to celebrities Stephen Colbert, Mario Batali, and Joan Rivers to ordinary folks around the world, everyone has a six-word story to tell.
Six-Word Memoirs: The Video Story
Nobody is illegal on stolen land
Pause for a moment and imagine the grand, confusing and ultimately exhilarating drama that is the sweep of your life. Think you can summarize it into a half-dozen carefully crafted words? He has just published his latest edition as a TED Book , and added a special twist: artwork. Smith put out the call for students — ranging from grade school to graduate school — to contribute illustrated Six-Word Memoirs. Today, the Washington Post features a slideshow of just a few of the mini-memoirs and images from the book.
After purchase, all buyers were then sent to a humorously long, semi-sadistic questionnaire to fill out about themselves, so I could hand-pick a surprise they'd actually like — as opposed to sending off random camel statues and industrial-size boxes of nudie playing cards. I knew the questionnaires would be fun to read anyone that hangs out here at TMF is, of course, not only supremely intelligent but witty as hell, I've discovered , but what I didn't expect, however, was something else:. You guys cracked opened your souls to me. Anyway, I wanted to take the opportunity to share some responses with you—anonymously, of course—in the hope that they'll light a big, inappropriately-sized blow torch under your own aspirations for this year…or at the very least, remind you that you're not alone. That many of us feel the same way.
Have your own six-word contribution? Email us! Stormyweather Banks Expect and accept unexpected and unacceptable. Judi Gedcke Anticipation is not just about ketchup. Amy Hostetter Out of everyone, I chose you. Sheldon Fredrickson live. Grace Juhlin Never really am where I want.
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Put Your Six To The Test.
And one of my new favorites is the six-word memoir,which helps demonstrate and hone the power of story. Here are a few of my favorites all penned by people who had about five minutes to think and write. Reminds me of a photographer who handed blank cards to people of all walks of life, asked them to write whatever they liked on it and shot them holding the card. The results were amazing — funny, sad, brave, poignant — every story was there. I was thinking what person has to be like when they are creating constantly and still taking the time to connect with people. I am envious.