Sunday, July 20, 2008

For Sale: Baby shoes, never worn.

…is rumored to be a short story by Ernest Hemingway. There are many legends concerning this story, but the most accepted one is that he wrote the piece to settle a bar bet for $10.00. Could be it was written as a challenge, but either way, it's a complete work of flash or micro fiction (a sudden, short-short, postcard etc.. story).

Smith, an online magazine conducted a reader contest that turned into a 500 submission per day fiasco. The most poignant have been compiled into a book titled, “Not Quite What I Was Planning”. What was the jest of the contest?

Your life story in six words.

Some from the famous:

“Former child star seeks love, employment.” (Justin Taylor)
“Well, I thought it was funny.” (Stephen Colbert)
“Brought it to a boil, often.” (Mario Batali)

Some from the ordinary:

Happy we couldn’t conceive our own. (KC Kerpatrick)
Learning to save money saved me. (Kenny Stapleton)
Couldn’t say it so I sang it. (Alli Gator)

My principal challenged 8th graders to create their own life story in six words. She told us that she had been working on hers for six months, yet the 13 year olds were given a few minutes and a piece of chalk (to write their story on the sidewalks of the school-cool idea anyway). They came up with some fairly adolescent ramblings, some goofy wordage, and on occasion some profound thoughts.

So I thought I would take my shot at my own life story in six words. Here are two of my attempts at posterity.

Faced darkest night. Activated hope, nevertheless.

25 years. Ended abruptly. Confidence renewed.

THE CHALLENGE: Create your own life story in six words and post it below.


Anonymous said...

Can't write now. Too busy living.

Marsha said...


Marc Abla said...

On a Journey, but never alone.

Shelly said...

On my way, not there yet.

I suppose this could be interpreted a lot of different ways. It speaks more of my present condition than my total life story....still thinking about the cardboard box testimony.

Sari said...

Wow, this is such a cool post, Marsha. I'm not sure what best sums me up, but how thought-provoking.

Karen (KWH) said...

Well, are we allowed to have more than one try?

For life in general:

Despite darkness, love, hope perservere; thrive.

Widowhood at (nearly) 3 years out:

Love found. Vows fulfilled. Memories cherished.

Widowhood during the first year:

Earth, life shattering loss of love.

Marsha said...

Thanks guys--these are awesome!

Lisa said...

Always screwing up, saved by grace.