Contest: Write a Six-Word Memoir of Love or Heartbreak for V-Day (and win a free book)

It’s almost that time of the year when big pink hearts take over storefronts, over 190 million cards are exchanged, and the average U.S. consumer will spend $103 on gifts, meals, and entertainment,. Yup, St. Valentine’s Day. The day of L-O-V-E.

I’m not one to make a big hoopla about this holiday – I’m one of those people who prefers to receive flowers or a gift on random days rather than on a day when there are such high expectations. But, a handwritten card or a poem, ah, that I will never turn away. swm_love.jpg

This year, my Valentine’s Day gift to my husband is a copy of SMITH magazine/Harper Perennial’s Six Word Memoirs of Love and Heartbreak: By Writers Famous and Obscure. It’s a pocket-sized paperback (4X6, a little smaller in size than your average Valentine’s Day Card, but chock full of so many more wishes and reflections on matters of the heart).

This book is the second offering from SMITH Magazine whose initial invite to writers two years ago was a simple one (inspired by Ernest Hemingway’s “For Sale: baby shoes, never worn): Everyone has a story. Can you tell yours in six words? The submissions poured in like crazy and soon enough they had published the NYT bestselling Not Quite What I Was Planning. (

The book features my very own six word memoir on page 13:

Sleeping, our foreheads touch. Fates mingle.

As I was flipping through the book, I came across another one-liner by our very own mutineer V.V. on page 70:

My book title makes dating awkward.

There were several more six-word desi memoirs that made it into the book:

Girl beautiful. No Mercedes. No love. – Sujoy Kumar Chowdhury
I fixed him but broke myself. – Amal Khairul
Proposal. Dowry. Bethrothal. Marriage. Children. Love. – Mitali Perkins
Arranged marriage now sounding pretty good. – Saleem Reshamwala

Add your own six word memoir (consider it your Valentine’s day greeting to the world) in the comments section before midnight on Sunday, February 15th. V.V. (author of the Washington Post choice for one of the best books of 2008, Love Marriage will pick two winners who will each receive a free copy of Six Word Memoirs of Love and Heartbreak. And, that’s our V-Day gift to you.

Below the fold, check out a book trailer for inspiration.

Incidentally, Sepia had its own six-word party a few years ago. Check it for some inspiration.)

155 thoughts on “Contest: Write a Six-Word Memoir of Love or Heartbreak for V-Day (and win a free book)

  1. a calm before the tempest devours

    the eye of an perpetual hurricane

    a blizzard reducing the brian’s visibility

    (i think i need to go somewhere with better weather…)