It reminded me of a New Yorker Talk of the Town piece I read back in February that has stayed with me. SMITH magazine ran a “write a 6-word memoir” contest, in honor of the legend of Hemingway writing a story in six words to win a bet.
Hemingway came up with “For sale: baby shoes, never worn.” Sadly evocative.
SMITH refined the story idea into a call for personal memoir, and their website has received over 30,000 entries, from all quarters.
They published a thousand of them or so in book form. The memoir chosen for the title is “Not Quite What I Was Planning,” sent in by Summer Grimes, a 25-year old hairdresser in St. Paul, Minnesota.
Beautifully said. And that it was sent in by a 25-year old makes it even more fabulous. (Let’s see what she has to say at 40.)
You can read through a bunch of them here in the New Yorker. (“Well, I thought it was funny" from Stephen Colbert)
At this point in time, here is my memoir:
Girl Interrupted, Must Return to Piano
I don’t mean it as drastic as Susanna Kaysen’s own actual memoir, or the film based on it. But in the sense that I was somewhere, and the fabric of that place was torn to shreds by The Talented Mr. Ripley, completely interrupting my life. And all of it revolved around my deep love of the piano and desire, as an adult, to learn to play.
The 6-words will change. There will be sequel.
And now for the One-Word meme, via Blue Girl and our very favorite Heretik. Pop over to see their oneness.
Your Partner: Unknown
Your Hair: Highlighted
Your Mother: Inspiring
Your Father: A Memory
Your Favorite Item: My piano
Your Dream Last Night: pedestrian
Your Favorite Drink: Diet Ginger Ale
Your Dream Home: beachfront
The Room You Are In: Living
Your Fear: Paralyzation
Where Do You Want to be in 10 years: Paris
Who You Hung Out With Last Night: Bach
What You Are Not: Laid back
Muffins: Triple berry
One of Your Wish Items: Family
Time: 3:00 a.m.
Last Thing You Did: cook
What You Are Wearing: loungewear
Your Favorite Weather: Sunny
Your Favorite Book: GWTW
Last Thing You Ate: sesame noodles
Your Mood: balanced
Your Best Friends: scattered
What Are You Thinking About Right Now: practicing
Your Car: M104 bus
Your Summer: Sicily
What’s on your TV: House
What Is Your Weather Like: clear
When Was the Last Time You Laughed: today
What is your relationship status: Independent