writing your six-word memoir

6wordmemoirsI just returned from the Solstice Writing Conference. It was an extended weekend full of hand-cramping rush writes, editing of memoirs, good food, and excellent company filled with talented writers and faculty.

One of the rush writes we did was to write as many six-word memoirs as we could in the 5 minutes allotted. Louise Plummer read a few of hers first to set the stage. I was intimidated. I had heard about these six-word memoirs when they went viral several years ago. I remembered Hemingway’s, which told so much in so few words: “For Sale: baby shoes, never worn.” I was certain that I couldn’t possible manage a decent one of my own, but that’s the beauty of a rush write: you don’t prepare, you don’t agonize over it, you just write whatever comes to your head until the timer goes off.

In such an environment, every writer will be pleasantly surprised to find that creativity comes. You actually CAN force it.

Here are a few of my six-word memoirs I wrote during the exercise:

  • Lauren gets left again and again.
  • I played piano while Grandma waltzed.
  • Dislocation, dislocation, dislocation, dislocation, and dislocation.

What’s yours? Set the timer and write a few. Ready? Go!

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