Top Celebrity Crushes in Six Words

939164

They say you never forget your first love and apparently your celebrity crushes are just as memorable! For SixContest #50, we asked you to tell us which celebs captured your desires. Teen Beat may be long gone, but as your memoirs reveal, those passions can be reignited in an instant (or in just Six Words). And there are plenty of modern-day crushes to keep you tingling! A selection of our favorite entries will be included in the upcoming book, Crush: Writers Reflect on Love, Longing, and the Lasting Power of Their First Celebrity Crush (HarperCollins, 2016), edited by writer and Six-Word contributor Cathy Alter and Dave Singleton.

We’re infatuated with all of your crushes, but these six really got us going:

6. “‘Dear Emma,’ Redacted. ‘Dear Unrequited Feelings.’” (Emma Watson) —Blacked0utWorld

5. “Boy crushes only, until Julia Roberts.” (Julia Roberts) —@eagle_fire (via Twitter)

4. “Penélope Cruz: My Woman on Top.” (Penélope Cruz) —G_Austin

3. “Oh to be Mr. Darcy’s shirt.” (Colin Firth) —Lizasighs

2. “My Tiger Beat centerfold first kiss.” (Shaun Cassidy) —@amysmithpickett (via Twitter)

And the most swoon-worthy celebrity crush is:

1. “From sneakers to crop tops. Sigh.” (Taylor Swift) —@JScribe (via Twitter)

Congratulations @JScribe, and thanks to everyone who joined in the fun! Whether in our SixContests, on FacebookInstagramTwitterTumblr or at sixwordmemoirs.com—keep on Sixing!

Tagged No Comments


Six-Word Memoirs Meetup on OSU Campus—And How to Hold Your Own

Some of the workshop attendees listening to Six-Word Memoir founder Larry Smith discuss some hints for crafting an effective Six.

OSU workshop attendees discovering Six-Word Memoirs

Meetups are a fun, interactive way to introduce concepts and connect people within communities. At the end of March, with the help of student organizations The Grove (Ohio State’s creative writing journal), and EUGO (OSU’s English Undergraduate Organization), a group of Buckeyes met on The Ohio State University campus to share their stories and experiment with the Six-Word Memoir form.

For the uninitiated, our backstory: since the 2006 debut of Six-Word Memoirs, a storytelling project of SMITH Magazine, our community has shared more than one million memoirs on SixWordMemoirs.com and countless more through our live events and on our Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, and Tumblr pages. Six Words is also a bestselling book series (seven books and counting!) and phenomenon found in classrooms and boardrooms around the world.

Many of the workshop attendees were new to the form, but by evening’s end, each writer had a sheet filled with drafts, ideas and numerous Six-Word Memoirs. The group responded to a range of prompts, from “What I did during Spring Break” to “Six Words on My Secrets.” These photos show a selection of their varied and unique Sixes!

IMG_2821

“Quit lolligagging and drive the car.”
—Sydney Watsek

IMG_2823

“Walk in. Walk out. Lesson learned.”
—Kelsy Hernandez

IMG_2825

“Scientist’s remorse: missing what makes humanity”
—Haley Cowans

IMG_2826

“Aluminum foil oven: Sylvia Plath Halloween”
—Elizabeth Lantz

IMG_2828

“Counting to-do’s like sheep before sleep”
—Rebecca Epperson

IMG_2830

“Scarlet-and-gray wedding? Oh yes, they did.”
—Rachel Layfield

IMG_2834

“Catheters and Dementia, a messy combo.”
—Jacob Nickel

IMG_2835

“Never at a loss for words.”
—Larry Smith, founder of the Six-Word Memoir Project

For more about the evolution of Six-Word Memoirs, listen to this PopTech talk from Larry Smith, the founder of SMITH Magazine and Six-Word Memoirs:  Ready to start crafting your own Six-Word Memoirs? This video highlights six easy tips to putting together a terrific story in six words: Teens have a way with words, too! We’ve created a special Teens section on our site and this video highlights how one class was inspired by Six-Word Memoirs:


Tell me more! Interested in creating your own Six-Word Memoir meetup or event? Here are six simple tips for throwing your own Six-Word Memoir Meetup:

1. Gather your group
This can be your roommates, your classroom, or your entire workplace! Groups of any size can craft and share their Sixes. Teachers may want to check out our special Six in Schools site and accompanying workbook.

2. Prepare some prompts
If you’re organizing the event, come prepared with some pre-determined prompts for the participants. You can hand out the prompts or simply give them topics—whatever you think will get your group to write some killer sixes!

3. Pass out paper
Sometimes the old-school pen and paper method works best for rewriting and restructuring the Six-Word Memoirs. It also allows everyone look back on their journey to find the best six words.

4. Cultivate conversation
This shouldn’t be a quiet event! Whether collectively or in small groups, have people share the sixes and chat about each other’s memoirs.

5. Invite backstories
While incredible stories can be told in just six words, a memoir can be elevated when paired with the story behind the six. Invite people to share their backstories, ideally with time limits in mind: backstories are a simple way to continue the conversation and encourage personal expression.

6.  Share your Sixes with us and the world
It’s easy to share your sixes on social media. Snap a picture and post your #SixWordSelfie to Instagram—don’t forget to tag @sixwordselfie. And mention @SixWords when you tweet your sixes on Twitter—use the hashtag #SixWords to spread the word.


Have fun and explore the possibilities—just keep it to six words! Have you put together your own Six-Word Memoir workshop? Let us know how it went by sharing your tips in the comments and we may feature you on our blog.

Tagged No Comments


Top “Madness” Memoirs in Six Words

935554

From media mania to personal pet peeves, madness is among us. For SixContest #49, we asked you to capture madness in its many forms. Some memoirs were driven by delirium, while others were nimbly neurotic. With so much that drives us wild, it was difficult to remain rational, but we maintained our sanity to pick this Top Six:

6. “Maybe it was the blue pill. ” –thepoet1

5. “Protect your tiny spark of madness.” –BanjoDan

4. “Smoking while on oxygen, definitely disturbed.” —SouthPorch

3. “Madly craving Don Draper’s unwritten memoir.” –JanAlexander

2. “Single malt on an empty stomach.” –Lorraine_Berry

And the memoir we’re most mad about: 

1. “The optimism of a Cub’s fan.”  –G_Austin

Congratulations G_Austin, and thanks to everyone who joined in the fun! Whether in our SixContests, on FacebookInstagramTwitterTumblr or at sixwordmemoirs.com—keep on Sixing!

Tagged 6 Comments


Classroom of the Month: Amber Lewis-Francis’ 5th Grade Class at Clarendon Elementary School

We can learn a great deal by examining ourselves and others, particularly when we ponder our words. Fifth grade teacher Amber Lewis-Francis first heard about Six-Word Memoirs on NPR. Always encouraging her students to write about themselves, Lewis-Francis thought it would be a great project for her students. “They embraced this concept,” she said of her students at Clarendon Elementary School in San Francisco. “I think it was freeing for them to only think about six words.” She was surprised by her students interpretations when she first introduced Ernest Hemingway’s infamous six-word novel: “For sale: baby shoes, never worn.” Instead of hearing the typically sorrowful tale, her students found humor: “They pictured a little kid, selling his own shoes on the corner, and thought it was so funny.”

Lewis-Francis asked her students to write Six-Word Memoirs based on ten important events from their life, encouraging them to write true tales. The students were also tasked to write positive words about each one of their classmates. Those descriptors were turned into a word bank, which each student received, illustrating how their classmates view them. They put these various brainstorming concepts into action using their Six-Word Memoirs, as a way to look at word choice and how different words can strengthen or change the story they are trying to tell.

As Amber wrote her own Six-Word Memoir on the board, she asked her students to come up with synonyms for the words in her memoir:

“Children fill my life with happiness”

unnamed-7
Amber Lewis-Francis’ chalkboard: Six-Word Memoir brainstorming in action

As students listed different words, the class was able to bear down to the essence of her memoir. What resulted was a deeper and truer story that evolved from their brainstorming:

“Children fill me with anxious glee.”

“We wanted to talk about the fact that I’m worried about them, as a teacher—it’s not just all happiness, and there are things I want t accomplish with them, which is where that anxiousness comes from,” Lewis-Francis said of her final memoir.

The project culminated with a bulletin board featuring the student’s memoirs, their illustrations that went along with their memoirs, and their own picture. Together, her 5th graders created Six-Word Memoirs that offer vivid snapshots of themselves. Great job, Room 205! Here are just a few of the personal and creative Sixes made by Lewis-Francis’ fifth graders:


“Dancing in mirrors, because I can.”

—Ryan


unnamed-5


“Headbands make astonishing outfits much better.”

—Anna R.


unnamed-4


“Sweet and sour, but magnificent too.”

—Ammanuel


unnamed-6


“Pizza is my round, glorious world.”

—Ethan


Teachers! Since we first launched the Six-Word Memoir project, educators across the spectrum have found Six Words to be a terrific classroom assignment and catalyst for self-expression. At our Six in Schools section we celebrate students’ work from classrooms around the world. Our Six Words for Schools workbook is the first in our suite of school-based teaching tools, and launched our Six Schools website, a place solely for teachers to share their classrooms’ work with other educators globally. Check it out! Let us know what your classroom is up to and we might feature your students’ work on our blog.

 

Tagged No Comments


Memoirist of the Month—April 2015: Marty B.

I use the Six Words app. I love having the site close when I can steal a minute away from work. What keeps me on this site is real people, real words, reality in just a few words.

Name: Marty B.MOTM April 2015 MB - Color

Place: Seattle, Washington

SMITH Member Since: December, 2011

Marty B. is an introspective soul whose six-word revelations are delivered with raw emotion and unfiltered honesty. Aptly known as thepoet1, he has shared more than 300 memoirs since joining us in 2011. Marty’s memoirs and backstories are cathartic. They reflect a turmoil that’s easily understood by anyone familiar with the darker side of life (“Pain has a name. My past.”). However, the horrors he’s faced go beyond ordinary loss and tragedy, the depths of which are understood by a relative few—those who have experienced war firsthand (“Humor with finger near the trigger.”). Learn more about his tempestuous, heroic and hopeful journey (“Open sign on heart means ‘Hope’”) as Marty answers our Six Questions:

Read More

Tagged 31 Comments


Top Six-Word Tributes Honoring Inspirational Women

931235

For SixContest #48, in honor of Women’s History Month, we asked you to craft Six-Word Tributes to an Inspirational Women. The influx of responses on our site and social media were poignant and proud, honoring the women who have shaped your lives and our world. While many of these women have made historic contributions, just as many have touched your lives in private yet profound ways.

Here are some of our favorites:

6. My daughter-in-law. Son hit the jackpot. —outlanderfortyfour

5. Elevated and celebrated. Maya. Poet. Queen. —Stephanie K. (via Facebook)

4. Harper Lee, for giving us Atticus. —Solstice22

3. Tina Fey. Because women are funny. —@DreadfullyBusy (via Twitter)

2. Be a good ancestor, Mama said. —@mamabearwrites (via Twitter)

And our favorite Six-Word Tribute to an Inspirational Woman:

1. My Grandmother proudly wore combat boots. —Lizasighs

Congratulations Lizasighs, and thanks to everyone who joined in the fun! Whether in our SixContests, on FacebookInstagramTwitterTumblr or at sixwordmemoirs.com—keep on Sixing!

Missed out on this SixContest? Enter our This Is “Madness”… In Six Words contest through Friday, April 10 at 3pm ET!

Writing in Six Words is a simple, creative way to get to the essence of anything—from the breaking news of the day to your own life and the way you live it. Since the debut of Six-Word Memoirs in 2006, our community has shared more then one million memoirs on SixWordMemoirs.com, and countless more through our Twitter, Facebook, Instagram and Tumblr pages.

Tagged 1 Comment


Top Six Dr. Seuss Inspired Memoirs

Six-Word-Seuss

March 2 was Read Across America Day, celebrated around Dr. Seuss’ birthday to inspire new generations of lifelong readers. Many of us learned to read using Seuss books. His truthful, succinct rhymes are unforgettable! We think he deserves more than one day of celebration, so for SixContest #47, we asked you to send in your Seussian Sixes. Some of you crafted your own rhymes, others put a modern spin on the Doctor’s renowned classics. Here are some of our favorites!

6) Conflicts spiking: not to my liking! —mguinha

5) Just cook him something else, Sam —@darth (via Twitter)

4) Horton hears fifty shades of Who. —phant

3) Words are wishes like Seussian fishes. —Professor Bird

2) I do obsess, I must confess! —@ashhole1124 (via Twitter)

And our favorite Seusstastic Six is:

1) Grinches and Whos taught me truths. —womanathequill

Congratulations womanathequill, and thanks to everyone who joined in the fun! Whether in our SixContests, on FacebookInstagramTwitterTumblr or at sixwordmemoirs.com—keep on Sixing!

Tagged 1 Comment


Classroom of the Month: Lori Beck’s Art Class at Kelly Middle School

Lori Beck noticed that students in her advanced art class had some free time, so she introduced Six-Word Memoirs to her students as a filler project, made up of multiple small assignments. An art specialist at Kelly Mill Middle School in Blythewood, South Carolina, Beck was shocked by how the students responded: “They took it to a place far beyond what I could have imagined.”

Alexis

“Trying to reach the good opportunities.”
–Alexis

“Can you please come back……Please?” –Ansley

As the students began creating their Sixes, Beck tried to give them as many resources as possible, such as, “The Evocative World of the Six-Word Memoir: A Q&A with new TED ebook author Larry Smith” and examples of other students’ “Sixers”—a term used by Beck and her classroom to refer to their Six-Word Memoirs. “Showing them examples and videos, and opening up discussion in the classroom really seemed to help,” Beck said, noting how the students just dove in to the project.

Beck asked her students to start compiling a list of powerful words about themselves, “The students had a worksheet of 55 Words All About Me and My World, and then I asked them to reflect on the list,” Beck said. “Anyone can put six words together…but I really wanted a deep connection, because after having them write their six words, I needed them to create a visual that they could really connect with.”

Students then took their list of words and went through an online thesaurus to strengthen their words. “I told them to find a word in one of their sixers to change to make it more powerful or more direct,” Beck explained. “And in the end you would see their face light up, saying ‘Miss, I think I have the best six words, I think I really have it this time.’”

Creating the most powerful Sixes they could was a moving experience for both student and teacher, which translated into incredible visuals that really showcased their Sixes. As a digital art project, Beck’s students used iPads with Sketchbook Express and Pixlr on Chromebooks to incorporate words and images into pieces that anyone could interpret.

Kristina, 13, 8th grade

“Cocoons shattered, a blazing butterfly emerged.” –Kristina

Kristina, an eighth grader who feels working with Six-Word Memoirs changed her worldview, says: “Each word in the English language carries much more weight for me, now that I know how powerful just six words, chosen out of millions, can be on you and the people around you. It has also fostered a bigger respect for authors and artists and their thought process behind every piece of art or literature that has ever been written with thousands of words instead of just six.”

Erin, 8th grade

“Dear love, Christmas sucks without you.” –Erin

Erin, eighth gradesaid the experience of crafting her Six-Word Memoir “held as much significance as a mother hearing her baby call her mama for the first time. I really loved this class!”

"Her lips beamed, her eyes didn't."-Annie

“Her lips beamed, her eyes didn’t.”-Annie

“Sixers got me to think from a different perspective,” said Annie, eighth grade,  “How can I be unique and portray a statement or story that is different?”

Jamal, 13-years-old, 8th grade

“Surrounded by people, yet still alone.” –Jamal

The project, filled with assignments and resources, challenged students on many levels. Eighth grader Jamal said, “The hardest part is finding a struggle worth talking about.”

Beck describes her classroom environment as “I give you voice and I give you choice,” and the students chose to insert their voice into their Six-Word Memoirs assignment, ultimately exceeding Beck’s wildest dreams for the project. Beck used Six-Word Memoirs to help students make connections, not only between words and images, but also between themselves and the world they live in.

Teachers! Since we first launched the Six-Word Memoir project, educators across the spectrum have found Six Words to be a terrific classroom assignment and catalyst for self-expression. At our Six in Schools section we celebrate students’ work from classrooms around the world. Our Six Words for Schools workbook is the first in our suite of school-based teaching tools, and launched our Six Schools website, a place solely for teachers to share their classrooms’ work with other educators globally. Check it out! Let us know what your classroom is up to and we might feature your students’ work on our blog.

Tagged No Comments


Memoirist of the Month—March 2015: Susan Breeden

“This site is extremely addictive. I’ll go through periods of posting several memoirs a day, followed by an extended creative drought. Yet, even when I’m not sixing or commenting, I’m never far away.”

Name: Susan BreedenMOTM Photo Susan Breeden

Place: Houston, Texas

SMITH Member Since: June, 2008

Susan­_Breeden has been an extensive contributor to Six-Word Memoirs. Since joining SMITH in 2008, she has submitted more than 1,100 memoirs and stories, and has been published in a number of our books and our desktop calendar. Her memoirs are top-shelf (“Grey Goose: My kind of animal”) and provocative (“We need a new mattress. Again.”), just like her avatar. Yet her insights and instincts are decidedly accurate (“Edit your words, not your dreams.”). Congratulations to Susan Breeden as our Memoirist of the Month for March 2015. She’ll enjoy a t-shirt with any Six-Word Memoir she’d like, thanks to our friends at Spreadshirt. Learn more about this writer at heart as Susan fields our Six Questions:

Read More

Tagged 44 Comments


Top Acceptance Speeches in Six Words

sixwordacceptancespeech
Awards season follows hot on the heels of the holiday season, and with it just as many sparkles and shiny baubles. When their names are called, some winners read from a card, some make political statements, and some trip and fall on their way up onto the stage. And almost all of the speeches could be a whole lot shorter. The perfect length could be about, say… Six Words.

For SixContest #46, we asked you to write your Six-Word acceptance speeches, and your responses came in droves. You showed us gratitude, egoism, and disbelief. Here are a few of our favorite six-word speeches:

6. “I owe this all to plagiarism.” —BanjoDan

5. “Oscar is my favorite naked man”. —dani333

4. “My crystal balls couldn’t predict this!” —oopsalittle

3. “Here so I don’t get fined.” —@darth (via Twitter)

2. “This makes up for a lot.” —TeaTopper

And our favorite Six-Word Acceptance Speech:

1. I faked it… I maked it. —ADHDean

Congratulations to ADHDean, and thanks to everyone who joined in the fun! Whether in our SixContests, on FacebookInstagramTwitterTumblr or at sixwordmemoirs.com—keep on Sixing!

Tagged 1 Comment