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It All Changed in an Instant: More Six-Word Memoirs by Writers Famous & Obscure Paperback – January 5, 2010
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“The brilliance is in the brevity.” (New York Post)
“A perfect distraction and inspiration.” (Denver Post)
“Irresistibly clever.” (Chicago Tribune)
“American haiku.” (St. Louis Post-Dispatch)
“You could spend a lifetime brainstorming.” (The New Yorker)
“The pithiest of life stories.” (O, The Oprah Magazine)
“Makes for compulsive reading and prove arguably as insightful as any 300+ page biography. Taken as a whole, this cascade of quotes from contributors famous and unknown creates a dizzying snowball effect of perspectives and feelings.” (Publishers Weekly)
“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.” (Toronto Star)
“The petite self-portraits encompass love and love, joy and sorrow-everything you’d expect from a longer book.” (ReadyMade Magazine)
“A fabulously appealing exercise both for writers and for readers.” (Telegraph)
“A good number conjure up both a story line and a worldview. Six-word review: Buy it, keep it in bathroom.” (Philadelphia Magazine)
“I fell so in love with it.” (Atlanta Journal-Constitution)
“Six words. Personal stories. Infinite possibilities. These ADD autobiographies prove that brevity can be the soul not simply of wit.” (VSL.com)
“Dude’s weird premise yields interesting stories.” (Ira Glass, NPR's This American Life)
“Six-word memoirs leave book lover speechless.” (Rocky Mountain News)
From the Back Cover
Thousands of people around the world responded to SMITH Magazine's call for six-word memoirs. Following up on the smashing success of the New York Times bestseller Not Quite What I Was Planning, here are more memoirs from Sarah Silverman, Junot Diaz, Neil Patrick Harris, Suze Orman, Gay Talese, Tony Hawk, Amy Tan—and hundreds of never-before-published writers.
Funny and bittersweet, witty and wild, or downright tragic, these addictive life stories are both monumental and miniscule. Six-word memoirs have become a globalphenomenon, offering anyone and everyone a telling peek at humanity and a chance to find the writer within.
"Father: ‘Anything but journalism.' I rebelled." —Malcolm Gladwell
"Live man's life in woman's body!" —Diane von Furstenberg
"Met wife at her bachelorette party." —Eddie Matz
"The miserable childhood leads to royalties." —Frank McCourt
"I never checked my lottery ticket." —Casey Burra
"Shiny head. Hippie hair. Shiny head." —Wally Lamb
"Bipolar, no two ways about it." —Jason Owen
"So would you believe me anyway?" —James Frey
"Can't look at heart donor's picture." —Tonia Hall
"Healed with steel, then got real." —Dr. Mehmet Oz
"I still practice my Oscar speech." —Jennifer Labbienti
"I've done it all except hear." —Marlee Matlin
More About the AuthorsDiscover books, learn about writers, read author blogs, and more.
Top Customer Reviews
After obsessively looking at six word memoirs online these editors have gleaned the best of the best. There's so much diversity in thought and storytelling in a hyper-limited platform.
Whenever I tell people about the book they usually say that they're really into the idea or they've already got one or gets them religiously for friends in hospitals or are at a turning point in their life.
At first I thought the idea was a too precious, but there's so much depth and humor in these books--- I became addicted and started writing ones of my own.
I think this book is a must have for writers. It inspires and is a great exercise.
The entries are almost all different and range from the funny to the poignant. I laughed out loud when I read "failed at love, won at scrabble" and was incredibly moved by a memoir about a woman who was raped and was unable to move on making her feel as if her life was useless. I smiled at the sentence "awkward girl takes chances. Fun ensures" and even wished that I had written it! Interspersed with text memoirs are graphic memoirs which brings an interesting aspect to the book.
I know that some have not given this book the best of reviews, but I would really encourage those people to re-read the book and think a little while on each entry because many have great depth. Personally, I loved it!
"It all changed in an instant" boasts of more artwork than previous books in the series, and the back matter also includes longer stories that expound on or explain some of some of the six-word memoirs throughout the book. Once again, though, the real soul of this book is the stories from people you will never know.
Made weird children -- will die proud. (27)
Michael Stipe mumbled my formative years. (57)
Little me would've liked be me. (84)
And because there is always one that hits too close to home:
My cat is an ungrateful brat. (108)
Book source: review copy provided by publisher
*All page numbers and quotes taken from an advanced uncorrected proof and may not match the published copy.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
I bought this as an Amazon recommendation after purchasing the best advice in six words- which is a great book. I am returning it as its not helpful or interesting... Read morePublished 1 month ago by Denise Ann Blohm
I am struck by the wide range of emotions six little words can convey. Some are so sweet, loving, funny, angry, sad...Published 6 months ago by ERIN M JERANEK
Love Larry Smith, what a great guy and the six word memoirs are a great read.Published 6 months ago by C. Brooks
The six word theme is clever writing. Contributors include known and unknown people. Good for peek-reading when a quick view of a page is satisfactory. Read morePublished 7 months ago by VB
Love Larry, and his wife Piper. Actually, my friend is in the book and I went to a reading from some of these amazing people, it was wonderful.Published 24 months ago by Kimberly Carvajal
Although this one isn't quite as bad as the teen edition ("I Can't Keep My Own Secrets"), it's still pretty bad. Read morePublished on February 4, 2014 by B. J. Ford
I wish this reviewing page would allow a review to only contain 6 words. It really makes you think. It's a very interesting way to sum up. Various topics.Published on August 24, 2013 by Inlovewithamazon