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Sunday, March 22, 2009

Six-Word Memoir Challenge

As most of you know, I am a huge fan of six-word memoirs. If you haven't read the emails, here's an example of Hemingway's shortest short. "For sale: baby shoes, never worn." Says a lot, doesn't it? Maybe his wife miscarried. Maybe they couldn't conceive or maybe the baby was stillborn. Does anyone know?

Here's a challenge to sleuths everywhere. Write six-word memoirs about mystery, murder and mayhem. It's fun! Here are a few of mine to get you started:

  • Bloody scene. Cops checking fingerprints, DNA.
  • Severe knife wounds. No one's talking.
  • Body hanging in closet by necklace.
  • Police found body in trunk. Whose?
  • Gasping for air, she shot boyfriend.
  • Dead body, missing gun. Where's wife?
  • Woman's body found. Husband looks suspicious.
It's easy and I can't wait to read yours. BTW, Smith has recently published two New York Times bestselling books featuring six-word memoirs. Enter and you might be published in their next book. Go to www.smithnet.com and check it out. (They should add me to their staff. I'm such a fan.)


Beth said...

The website I gave is incorrect. Sorry! It should be www.smithmag.net

Shirley McCann said...

This looks like a lot of fun! We could also come up with some great story ideas from these few words!

Here's a few of mine. I'm still thinking.

Teacup empty. Husband dead. Rat Poison.

Vacant cottage. Bloody knife. Wife missing.

Plowed garden. Broken shovel. Husband missing.

Beth said...

Shirley, those are excellent! You should also send them to Smith unless you're afraid of being arrested under suspicion of something. LOL. We'll vouch for you.

Yes, these are great story-starters and/or premises for short stories or even novels! Also, Smith allows writers to add back stories to their six-word memoirs. Up to 1500 words, I believe.

Alison said...

Good job sis..I think the one dedicated about me should be posted ;)

Baby Shoes. New, saved for occasion.

Sisters taunt. Mess with her? Dead.

Beth said...


My sister may forgive, never forgets!

Alison said...

Sister remembers. Tells everyone she knows.


Alison said...

At computer. Big butt, no life.

Now you did it...got me started and how true in my case.

Alison said...

Sexy voice. Exciting font. Gross date.

Sexy voice. Best friend Dan. Fargo.

Ex called again. Regretful. Called Dan

Dinners owed. Far. Maybe surprise me.

(you can tell your whole life in 6 words..and in the order of the occurrence)

Anonymous said...

Six words? OK. How about:

Sheep run wild. Bo Peep arrested.

Alison said...

Heart pounding. Window opening, stranger's hand.

Knob creeking. Bends down, eyeball starring.

Running. Falls, flat on dead body.

Alison said...

Insane. Voices. Threats. His reality now.

(Ok..that hits home talking to someone while that was occuring..very odd, sad experience)

Alison said...

Insommia. Go to work, desires sleep.

Work. Hits the lottery. Outta there.

Dating Game Show. Ugly always picked.

Woohoo..this is fun sis!

Patricia Harrington said...

Fun stuff, indeed.

Gorgoeous view. Cliff's Edge. Echoing Scream.

Had to give it a try.

Pat Harrington

Beverly said...

This is how I often felt:

"I Quit!" yells wife and mother.

RTHRBRTN said...

Abusive husband. Antifreeze cocktail. Insurance money.

I also have one that is a memoir of my life.

Hillbilly kid. Supermon. Writing Widow.

Shirley McCann said...

This one is from Bonnie. She's still having trouble getting onto our site.

Clueless crime/ Sleuths rescue /crooks curse.

Thanks Bonnie!