Wednesday, March 19, 2008

What's Your Story (In Six Words ...)?

I heard about a really interesting book yesterday on Jean Chatzky's XM Radio program. The book is called "Not Quite What I Was Planning," and it's a collection of more than 800 six-word memoirs, including some from celebrities like Stephen Colbert ("Well, I thought it was funny") and singer Aimee Mann ("Couldn't cope so I wrote songs").

The book was born when online magazine Smith asked readers to capture their own life stories in only six words. The six-word concept isn't a new one. Legend has it that Ernest Hemingway was asked to write a novel in only six words and his simple yet profound contribution was "For sale: Baby shoes. Never worn."

The book sounds very interesting, and I started wondering what all my friends in the wonderful world of blogging would write for their own six-word memoirs.

Here are a couple that might summarize my life:

"I knew more than I thought" and "It really wasn't all that difficult"

So, what would your six-word memoir say? Here's my challenge list:

Chris Bailey
Phil Gerbyshak
Andrew Young
Nick Smith
Mike Sansone
David Zinger
Debbie Call
Dick Richards
Lisa Haneberg
Pam Thomas
Liz Strauss
Troy Worman
Steve Farber
Terry Starbucker
Patti Digh

C'mon - play along! And invite others to join!


At 1:06 PM, Blogger Chris Bailey said...

Oooh...I'm a man of many words so this will be a challenge for me. But a really enjoyable one. Gimme a weekend to distill myself into 6 words.

At 1:11 PM, Blogger Jodee Bock said...

OK, Chris, but the clock's ticking!

(See, that's six words right there!)

(so was that ... this is catchy!)

At 9:15 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...


I like the thought and brevity.

Here is my story:

David opened slowly and reached out.

That's my story and I am sticking to it.

David Zinger

At 9:21 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Jodee, this if actually a fascinating exercise. Here goes: In spite of doubt, Debbie leaped. I think I'll go over an write a post on this now. Thanks for sharing the fun!

At 9:29 AM, Blogger Jodee Bock said...

David & Deb:

Those are great! I know it feels like a daunting task, but the best advice I read is just to dive in - don't think so much about it. Good job!!

At 5:09 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Jodee --

This is an amazing exercise! I read about it on Deb Call's blog.

Mine is:

"He got out of his way."

Thank you!

At 5:35 PM, Blogger Jodee Bock said...


Congratulations for living your memoir! Think of what would happen in our world if everyone got out of their way! I love it!

Thanks so much for visiting!


At 3:31 PM, Blogger Nick Smith said...

Hi Jodee

This probably fits for me: "boy tries to fly without wings"

May have been subliminally inspired by Pink Floyd -->

..and on a very personal level: "no such thing as far away" :)

At 3:52 PM, Blogger Troy Worman said...

Don't wait for permission to succeed!

At 5:51 PM, Blogger Jodee Bock said...

Nick & Troy: Those are great! Thank you so much for playing!


At 10:38 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hi Jodee,

I posted the same challenge on our website at the beginning of February ( Perhaps you saw it? One of my favourite six-word stories is 'Paul, Alison, Marcus, Martin and Chris'.

Alison Esse

At 12:49 PM, Blogger Terry Starbucker said...

Hi Jodee! Sorry about the delay in responding - I'm just now coming out of what I call a "flu fog". Yuck. Now that I'm feeling better, here's my shot at a six word memoir:

"Always kept glass half full. Always."

All the best!

At 3:23 PM, Blogger Rose - Watching Waves said...

"Living the center of my self" - note that it's "my self", not "myself." I'm constantly exploring both aspects of my self, human and Divine.

(I found you through a search regarding, which I love. It's nice to be reminded that we already know everything we need to know.)

At 4:09 PM, Blogger Llwllyn said...

One might lose track of time

At 8:33 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Here's mine...

"Go fast, slowly"

At 3:32 PM, Blogger Jodee Bock said...

Wow - I'm behind on commenting on the comments! I'm absolutely loving all your responses! Allison - I didn't see your challenge and I'm assuming your six words have something to do with people you're close to? Terry: Glad to hear you're feeling better. Love the second "always." Maybe sometimes we can do more with less - and sometimes we need that second shot of "always." Good job - and fits you! Rose: love the two word tag at the end - my self. That's great. And yes, I'm a HUGE TUT fan! I'm grateful you found me! Llwllyn: ain't that the truth! What a precious commodity, time! And Matt - way to sum it up in half the words! Talk about efficiency - slowly! Love them all! Thank you so much. Now on to living those lives that make up the memoirs!

At 9:06 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...


I thought I would break it up a little.

Personal life: Go ahead, take off the cast

Personal/Business life
Ready, FIRE. OOPs forgot to Aim...

Management philosophy:
Human Resources: Hire Slower, Fire Faster


At 12:10 PM, Blogger Kathee Nash said...

my philosophy in 6 words:

"My voice matters, therefore I engage"

At 8:48 AM, Blogger Jodee Bock said...

Doug: Those are great! I especially love the "Ready, Fire, OOPS - forgot to aim" one because that could be mine!

Kathee: Good for you! It's great to see that you know you matter. I trust that those around you are given permission to matter, too, because you do. Fantastic!

Thank you both for playing! This is wonderful!


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