The Six-Word Memoir Blog

“Found a home in the library.” – Jess deCourcy Hinds

Sunday, May 3rd, 2009

By Rachel

One of my oldest friends (we got married in pre-school) is now the librarian and creative writing teacher at Bard High School Early College Queens. It’s probably exactly what I’d want to be doing if I weren’t doing what I’m doing, so I was very honored to guest teach a class on Six-Word Memoirs. Bard is a public school that includes an early college program, and the students are very diverse and very smart.

After teaching elementary school students, it was fun and challenging to discuss confessional culture and crowdsourcing with a group of savvy teens raised on Blogger and Wikipedia. They’re serious writers of fiction, so I got to talk pretty in-depth about choosing words that convey moods and cultural ideas instead of just likes and dislikes. Editing in groups, we massaged “Hated music, now I love it” into the more-evocative “Hated music, now I play Tchaikovsky” and “Too much pressure, missed the shot” into the courageously candid “I cried over a missed goal.”

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