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Deceptively simple and surprisingly addictive, Not Quite What I Was Planning is a thousand glimpses of humanity—six words at a time.
One Life. Six Words. What's Yours?
When Hemingway famously wrote, "For Sale: baby shoes, never worn," he proved that an entire story can be told using a half dozen words. When the online storytelling magazine SMITH asked readers to submit six-word memoirs, they proved a whole, real life can be told this way too. The results are fascinating, hilarious, shocking, and moving.
From small sagas of bittersweet romance ("Found true love, married someone else") to proud achievements and stinging regrets ("After Harvard, had baby with crackhead"), these terse true tales relate the diversity of human experience in tasty bite-sized pieces. From authors Jonathan Lethem and Richard Ford to comedians Stephen Colbert and Amy Sedaris, to ordinary folks around the world, everyone has a six-word story to tell.
SMITH Magazine founding editor Larry Smith has worked as an editor at Men's Journal, ESPN: The Magazine, and Might. His writing has appeared in the New York Times, the Los Angeles Times, Popular Science, on Salon.com, and many other places. Larry lives in New York City
“Perfect for the American attention span...Will thrill minimalists and inspire maximalists.”
“The brilliance is in the brevity.”
-New York Post
“You could spend a lifetime brainstorming.”
-The New Yorker
“In six words: Gimmicks should always be this fun.”
“Compulsive reading...as insightful as any 300+ page biography.”
“A perfect distraction and inspiration, and a collection that begs to be shared.”
“The pithiest of life stories.”
“A fabulously appealing exercise both for writers and for readers.”
-Daily Telegraph (London)
“Six-word review: Buy it, keep it in bathroom.”
“These tiny windows into people’s lives are at once addictive and illuminating, challenging and accessible.”
“Smith seems to have struck a chord in the current zeitgeist, unleashing a torrent of self-expression not unlike the one launched by Frank Warren when he began inviting people to write their secrets on the back of postcards.”