Sunday, April 13, 2008
Can You Describe Your Life in Six Words?
I was browsing tonight on Amazon.com (as is my wont) and came across the book Not Quite What I Was Planning: Six-Word Memoirs by Writers Famous and Obscure. SMITH magazine editors invited readers in 2006 to sum their lives up in the space of six words, and the results are culled together in this volume.
Some mini-memoirs (from the book and the website) that struck me:
"I asked. They answered. I wrote." -Sebastian Junger
"A sake mom, not soccer mom." -Shawna Hausman
"Cursed with cancer. Blessed by friends." -Hannah Davies, age 9
"One time, an emu bit me." -Matt Lewis
Intellectual games like this can be hard for me to resist, but I couldn't come up with a single set of six words that contained my whole life "in a nut shell." A few of my attempts included
Born early, doctored late, danced between.
Went sleepless to help others sleep.
Still wondering about that empty tomb.
After school, just wanted oboe lessons.
True happiness: loving husband, loved children.
The fewer the words, the harder the task! My distilled life is not that interesting...but it was an interesting exercise in uncovering what was most prominent in the memoir-writing department of my brain...