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Tuesday, May 16, 2017

Less Is More

It's rather unfortunate that in elementary and high schools there seems to have been a focus on quantity rather than quality in writing, thus kids end up shrinking margins and expanding spaces to achieve the page requirement for the assignment.

Truly, though, a few words, well thought-out and written can say more than pages of filler verbiage.

Not Quite What I Was Planning: Six-Word Memoirs by Writers Famous & Obscure from Smith Magazine [920.02 NOT] is an example of "less is more." You can't get much shorter than six words and still express a thought! The premise of the six-word memoir project is the story that
Ernest Hemingway was once challenged to write a story in six words. Papa came back swinging with "For sale: baby shoes, never worn." Some say he called it his best work.

From the Introduction to Not Quite What I Was Planning.
Although the book was published in 2006, Smith Magazine has continued the Six-Word Memoir Project. You can read more about it here.

Here are a few example of the memoirs you'll find in the book:

My life's a bunch of almosts.
Shari Bonnin

Verbal hemophilia.
Why can't I clot.
Scott Mebus

Fact checker by day,
liar at night.
Andy Young

Detergent girl:
Bold. Tide. Cheer. All
Martha Clarkson

If you're having problems writing concisely in your work or private life, look for William Brohaugh's Write Tight: How to Keep Your Prose Sharp, Focused, and Concise [808 BRO].

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