Thursday, October 19, 2006

Out and Around: The Internet

The Illustrated 'Hemingway Challenge'

What is 'The Hemingway Challenge'? A literary anecdote, possibly apocryphal.

Ernest Hemingway was once asked (or was challenged in a bar bet) to write a story in six words. What Hemingway came up with:
For sale: Baby shoes, never used.
As the story goes, Hemingway considered it to be his greatest work.

Flickr has laid down the gauntlet to photographers, with some great results. Like this one:

The story in six words:
He's a lover, not a fighter.

Apparently all of this got started on the internet when Utne magazine reprinted an article from a 2004 Blackbook article wherein the editors issued "The Hemingway Challenge" to twenty-five contemporary writers of renown, and this was the result:
"Forgive me!" "What for?" "Never mind."
~John Updike

Eyeballed me, killed him. Slight exaggeration.
~Irvine Welsh

Satan—Jehovah—fifteen rounds. A draw.
~Norman Mailer

"Welcome to Moeshe Christiansen’s Bar Mitzvah."
~Andrea Seigel

grass, cow, calf, milk, cheese, France
~Rick Moody

He remembered something that never happened.
~A.M. Homes

Saigon Hotel. Decades later. He weeps.
~Robert Olen Butler

—I love you . . . –Love ya back.
~Courtney Eldridge

She gave. He took. He forgot.
~Tobias Wolff

You are not shit. You are!
~Memoir, Jerry Stahl

All her life: half a house.
~Jamie O’Neill

Poison; meditation; skiing; ants — nothing worked.
~Edward Albee

My nemesis is dead. Now what?
~Michael Cunningham

I saw. I conquered. Couldn’t come.
~David Lodge

"Cyanide? Bitter almonds." He knew. How?
~Brian Bouldrey

Father died. Mother triumphed. I left.
~Mary Gaitskill

"You? Her? No dice, fat boy."
~Pinckney Benedict

Oh, that? It’s nothing. Not contagious.
~Augusten Burroughs

Mother’s Day came, doubling Oedipus’ pleasure.
~Bruce Benderson

Tossed remorselessly, whiffle balls sure hurt.
~J.T. LeRoy

As she fell, her mind wandered.
~Rebecca Miller

It’s negative. Say hi to Mom.
~Ben Greenman

Horny professor. Failing coed. No tenure.
~A Short History of Academia, Sue Grafton

Shiva destroys Earth: "Well,’s that."
~A.G. Pasquella

Havana’s no place for hockey, coach.
~Nicholas Weinstock.

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