LARRY SMITH is the founder and editor of SMITH Magazine, best known for launching the Six-Word Memoir® project. Six Words is a bestselling books series, live events program, board game, and form of self-expression employed to spark self-expression and hone missions in classrooms, boardrooms and corporate retreats. Anticipating the microblogging explosion, SMITH Mag originally launched the Six-Word Memoir project in November 2006 in partnership with Twitter with a simple online challenge asking: “Can you tell your life story in six words?” Now more than 1 million Six-Word Memoirs have been shared across SixWordMemoirs.com, mobile and social media. Larry’s latest launch is the civic engagement initiative, Six in the City, currently debuting in Columbus, Ohio.
“Larry Smith is on a quest to spark the creativity of aspiring writers.”
– Oprah Magazine
Larry has been called a “luminary in the story world” on the A Storied Life blog, one of the “most interesting people of the day” on CNN, a ‘Levi’s storytelling pioneer” and has been interviewed on storytelling and the power of the short form in Interview Magazine, The Happiness Project, True/Slant, The Gothamist, among other places. For links to interviewswith Smith on NPR, The CBS Early Show, The New York Times, and elsewhere, visit the Six-Word Memoir press page.
“Personable, energetic, and blessed with great hair, Smith uses the Six Word Memoir as a teaching tool in schools and a team-building technique in corporate settings.”
– Philadelphia Inquirer
SPEAKING & WORKSHOPS
Larry has spoken at companies such as ESPN, Levi’s, Google, Twitter, Dell and Shutterfly on the power of personal storytelling, how to engage an audience, and how a simple idea can make a big difference. He also leads workshops at foundations, nonprofits, boardrooms, and schools across the country.
In smaller groups, such as staff and boards of a company or nonprofit, Larry regularly teaches a workshop called “What’s Your Story: Nailing Your Mission.” In schools, he gives an assembly presentation about the power of personal storytelling, as well as leading smaller workshops with individual classrooms from third grade to graduate school.
Larry teaches the class, “What’s Your Story: How to Deliver an Authentic Elevator Pitch,” at The Hired Guns Academy, and on-site at companies of all description and sizes.
He closed the opening day of the 2010 PopTech conference, and has spoken at AARP’s National Convention, Ignite NYC, The 92nd Street Y, the New York Public Library, and elsewhere. His presentation at the 2011 SXSW Interactive Festival, “How to Create an Internet Phenomenon for Peanuts,” was called “Most Inspirational” by KQED Radio.
“Most inspirational presentation goes to Larry Smith, editor of SMITH Magazine.His ‘How to Create an Internet Phenomenon for Peanuts’…was humorous, on-point, and empowering. Many of us left that room with renewed commitment to our ideas.”
– KQED Radio
WRITING & JOURNALISM
Prior to launching SMITH, Larry was the articles editor of Men’s Journal, and has been the executive editor of Yahoo! Internet Life, senior editor at ESPN The Magazine, a founding editor of P.O.V., and editor-in-chief of its sister publication, EGG, as well as an editor of Might magazine. While living in San Francisco, he was managing editor of the wire/syndication service AlterNet, and now serves on its board. His writing has appeared in The New York Times, Popular Science, Men’s Health, Salon, Slate, and other places. He has contributed personal essays to the anthologies Modern Love: 50 True and Extraordinary Tales of Desire, Deceit, and Devotion, Maybe Baby, Cassette From My Ex: Stories and Soundtracks of Lost Loves, Unscrolled: 54 Writers and Artists Wrestle with the Torah, Unstuck: 52 Ways to Get (and Keep) Your Creativity Flowing. Larry’s story, “My Life With Piper: From Big House to Small Screen,” was featured on Medium.com and is available as an audiobook.
He currently lives in Columbus, Ohio with his wife, the writer Piper Kerman and their son.
Essays & Journalism Samples
Stuart Krichevsky Literary Agency