Read I Can't Keep My Own Secrets: Six-Word Memoirs by Teens FamousObscure by Rachel Fershleiser Larry Smith Online


From the editors of the international phenomenon and New York Times bestseller Not Quite What I Was Planning comes a collection of six-word memoirs created by and for teens.From cancer to creativity, prom dates to promiscuity, and breaking hearts to breaking laws, the memoirs in this collection reveal that often the youngest writers have the most fascinating stories to telFrom the editors of the international phenomenon and New York Times bestseller Not Quite What I Was Planning comes a collection of six-word memoirs created by and for teens.From cancer to creativity, prom dates to promiscuity, and breaking hearts to breaking laws, the memoirs in this collection reveal that often the youngest writers have the most fascinating stories to tell.One life. Six words. What's yours? ...

Title : I Can't Keep My Own Secrets: Six-Word Memoirs by Teens FamousObscure
Author :
Rating :
ISBN : 9780061726842
Format Type : Paperback
Number of Pages : 182 Pages
Status : Available For Download
Last checked : 21 Minutes ago!

I Can't Keep My Own Secrets: Six-Word Memoirs by Teens FamousObscure Reviews

  • Donalyn
    2019-06-09 09:44

    The title captures what the book is about, but it doesn't prepare you for the loss, humor, passion, and longing expressed by teens-- six words at a time.One favorite, "I never got my Hogwarts letter." *sigh* Me, neither.

  • Jackie
    2019-05-18 17:49

    I was not a happy teenager. I was miserable, starting seventh grade at a new school, not knowing anyone, with acne. Life has only gotten better since then. If you had to write a memoir of your life in six words, what would you say? How much of yourself would you reveal? Written by teens, these six-word memoirs open a little window into the lives of these teenagers, ranging from the banality of high school life to really dark stuff. Reading this makes me SO glad not to be a teenager anymore. Not that I'm really all that different, fundamentally...Some are positive, and take me back to being an awkward teenager:- My weird elbows make me special. - Julie W. (p. 98)- Nerdy, obsessive, awkward. So much fun. - Samantha P. (p. 71)- Hair's pink to piss you off. - Stephanie N. (p. 92)- On Facebook. Nobody chatting with me. - Danielle C. (p. 175). Some are painfully honest, and some are heartbreaking. Lots and lots and lots of teenage angst and heartbreak:- Would be happier with her sister. Landon O. (p. 132)- Always the friend, never the girl. Kristy D. (p. 130)- I regret sleeping with my teacher. Jordan F. (p. 70)Personal favorites:- I still read children's fiction books. - Jenna P. (p. 160)- Octopus are my number one fear. - Benjamin M. (p. 157)- Late to school every single day. - Mindy T. (p. 81)- Marching band has saved my life. - Kristin H. (p. 62)There are some memoirs by famous teens, most of whom I have NO idea who they are. Okay, I know who Taylor Swift is (My diary is read by everyone, p. 179). They aren't any more thoughtful or profound than the non-famous teens. As a librarian, I love that this book has an index, so you can look up topics such as Age, Death, Eating Disorders, Gay, Love, Namecalling, Sarcasm and cynicism, Sex, Siblings, and Weight. If teenagers have a preoccupation with it, it's in the index. There's also space for readers to write their own memoir, which you can then submit at If you are a teen. Which, I repeat, I am not. But my teenage self would have said: Busy reading until life gets better. And, it did.

  • Christy
    2019-06-12 10:56

    Could you write a memoir using six words? I'm not sure I could. What would I say about myself in six words? At first it seems simple and it could be it - I can say a lot about myself in six words depending on the day and my mood. But to say something meaningful or important, that takes time and thought - every word needs to count. That is what this book is about. 600 six word memoirs written by teens ages 13 to 19. Some memoirs are simple and fun. I laughed when I read this one "I seriously love school bean burritos." (Kenna J) I remember how I used to "seriously love" school french fries slathered in gravy. Gross I know, but I still appreciate enjoying a greasy treat in the middle of the day. Some of the entries are painfully honest "Called him, but he hung up" (Amanda B.) and some are brillant "My mind soars on paper airplanes". (Bridget H.) And yes, some are not nice "Aspiration: colonize Mars. You're not invited." (Jordan H.) After reading this book , I wonder what I would write? Maybe something like this.... "Most happy with book in hand". (Christy G.)Highly recommended.

  • Eden Bissell
    2019-06-09 18:00

    This book is just what it says: teenagers describe their lives in six words. It wasn't beautiful, I can't call it that, because while some parts were in fact beautiful, other parts were ugly. I think that's why I liked it so much. It was so honest. And the ugly mixed with the beautiful is such an accurate portrayal of life. I do not advise reading this book unless you have a copy that you can mark in. I went through with a highlighter and marked it up, writing question marks next to the more ambiguous memoirs and highlighting ones I loved or understood or appreciated. In that sense, every time I reread this it will feel like I'm reading my own diary - because I am expressing things I've felt through each of these other kid's words. I loved this book. It's easy to read in an hour or two. I will reread it over and over and highlight and rehighlight. Read this.

  • gwayle
    2019-06-09 17:10

    I guess six-word memoirs are all the rage right now. Most of these ones by teenagers are pretty much what you'd expect--melodramatic, confessional, self-important. They're about school, love, sex, parents, expectations, not fitting in. There is a hilarious index in the back of the book: my favorite entry is "namecalling." I don't know why I was so amused by that; I guess because it's kind of an antiquated term.Several were rather lovely and mysterious ("I'm deaf, but she can't hear"; "I can't look at babies anymore"; "The fireworks were gone by then"), though, and I laughed out loud a few times ("Call me 'hippie.' I. Dare. You."; "I am in a love pentagon"; "Mom just revoked my creative license"; "My Dad has more MySpace friends"). My very favorite was probably "Childhood fantasy: Living in a library." Hell, yes. (The one from Disney's Beauty and the Beast?)I don't know why the editors added ones from "famous" (I didn't recognize most of the names) teens; those "memoirs" were absolutely trite and embarrassing. But this little volume, which I read in an hour, does make me curious about the other six-word memoir collections in this series.

  • Jennifer
    2019-06-16 11:56

    Great, it is 6 word memoirs from teens. Excellent for book talking to all agees of teens! Here are jsut a few.Five elementary schools and two obituaries. Hung myself. Sister found me. Alive. I wish "sir" was "dad" instead. Homecoming King with a septum ring. Read "lord of the Flies". Threw up. Defined by numbers: age, weight, SAT Am a ballerina, still totally clumsy. I miss all my imaginary friends. Praying that "adulthood" does not mean "amnesia"

  • Kristina
    2019-06-09 11:11

    Six word memoirs say a lot (see what I did there?) I enjoyed this A) because I could read it quickly. B) because some where relatable. C) because some were not but were incredibly powerful. I was also able to create an activity for my class with this one. (6 word memoirs describing the books). Worth reading; worth trying. A great way to practice writing.

  • Yan
    2019-06-16 15:44

    This book is a collection of humor, sass, and anguish. We start off with a 6 word memoir by none other than Ernest Hemingway “For sale: baby shoes, never worn”. It was a perfect starting point and a challenge to every other teen to mimic Hemmingway’s short story. How much of the truth can you hide in just 6 words? A lot it seems. Contemplated joining the circus. Foolishly chose college—Sally C.My dad has more MySpace friends—Darlye J.These are just two 6-word memoirs that popped out for me. This book has something for everyone with such a diverse voice of which hundreds (800 I believe) teens spoke out and gave their life story. Teens across the country can relate to at least one memoir out of the many. You may see both familiar and unfamiliar names as you embark on a read of their worlds, their life stories, their 6 word memoirs.The famous teens gave some of the uninspiring meant to be inspiring 6 words that elicited a yawn. I wanted something more powerful but what can you do. Luckily it was just a mere few pages with the rest as mesmerizing as can be.Overall: Addicting and with such a short read, this book packs a punch.

  • Melissa
    2019-05-16 14:50

    I've adored SMITH Mag's six-word memoirs for a while, and last fall they launched to collect material for a new book written entirely by teenagers. In one year, more than 65,000 memoirs have been posted. The site is worth visiting daily for intense, from-the-heart writing. Founding Editor Larry Smith calls the teens who've submitted memoirs "honest and brave and funny and intense and awesome."That's pretty much how we feel about the book that has come out of these submissions, I Can't Keep My Own Secrets (HarperTeen, $9), which hits shelves tomorrow.Smith says one of his favorite memoirs right now is "Living my dream, please send money. --Brittney L." If I had to pick out one or two, I'd go with "I'm only popular during summer camp. --Beatrice M." and "My scars: Everybody stares. Nobody asks. --Bonnie B." Or okay, let me just list three, because I also love "Two cheerleading sisters. I chose acting. --Maggie M." Truly, every page of this book has heartfelt, touching, chilling, witty memoirs. Even celebrities like Taylor Swift penned some six-worders, but I'll stop giving spoilers. Just get this book!

  • Ms. Wood
    2019-06-02 10:05

    These six-word memoirs are sometimes hilarious, sometimes tragic, but always powerful. Here are some favorites from amongst the 800 in the collection: "Met online; love before first sight.""Hair's pink to piss you off.""I fulfilled my awkwardness quota today.""I'm seventeen, engaged, and not pregnant.""My mom had my boyfriend deported.""Late for school every single day.""According to Facebook, we broke up."Listen to the editor explain the book and read a few six-word memoirs at

  • Heather
    2019-05-16 10:52

    I LOVE this book, hilarious and heartbreaking, I want to write my own six word memoir now. I will definitely take this on outreaches and have teens write their own six word memoirs, maybe I could even turn it into a program at the library or do it for a teen tuesday activity. I can't believe six words can say so much...

  • Mrs. Schatz
    2019-06-16 10:05

    Wow!! What an amazing book and I'm soooo envious that people can sum up their feelings/life in 6 words. I wonder how long it took some of them. Some of the memoirs are funny, silly, poignant, gut-wrenching, and weary. A must read!!! I think our students should do this and I compile it into a notebook of some kind.

  • Shayne Bauer
    2019-05-29 15:07

    What a refreshing read! This little gem is a collection of teens' six-word memoirs. It's fun to go through them to get a quick glance at teen life; however, several pieces gave me chills and made me linger a bit. This book reminds us that some teens are torn apart by their daily lives. Their words are so powerful.

  • maila
    2019-06-04 15:06

    SUKAAAAAAA#sixword nya ada yang tragis, sedih, miris, satir, lucu... tapi bagus. bikin merenung dan tertawa.habis baca ini langsung mencoba buat sixword juga tapi nggakbisa wqwq

  • Kara Belden
    2019-06-15 13:09

    Laughed and cried in one sitting!

  • Ashley Reid
    2019-06-05 09:53

    Great quick read, some are interesting. :)

  • Paula
    2019-05-28 15:10

    Stories can be brief and powerful.

  • Bonnie Chen
    2019-05-16 13:43

    This was one of the best books I ever read. This book kept my mind thinking and analyzing each six word memoirs.This book is composed of many six word memoirs, written by all different authors. Each memoir has its own story-happy,miserable,heartbreaking and so forth. Although the stories are not clear, the 6 word memoirs allowed me to creatively come up with a possible scenario that fits the 6 word memoir.On the other hand, some memoirs are really clear to me and I can relate to them. For example, some of my favorites are I'm secretly much older than 15 years old, Follow your dreams,not your parents,Fell down. Got up. Kept dreaming. Some days sucked. Sun still rose. Can finally say I beat depression.A roller coaster ride of unbelievable events.I just want to feel infinite. and A time machine would be nice. The reason is these phrases can be applied to my life as well and I totally understand the feeling of that quote. Unfortunately, there are quotes that tell really sad stories. For example, Hung myself. Sister found me. Alive. Teen victim of shooting. Lost leg.ADD,OCD. Sucks to be me. Found out I had cancer. Damn. Regardless of the memoir, I think that the authors are really brave, as some of these stories are personal, but they still shared it with us. This book taught me that everyone has a story to tell-happy,sad,disappointing, or miserable.

  • Carroll
    2019-05-27 10:56

    This book is a fast read, and you might be tempted to think of it as "fluff" that has no meaning-- until you actually pick it up and delve into it. Smith magazine invited readers to sum up their lives in six words--no more, no less-- and the results are a glimpse into the hearts and minds of teen from every walk of life. If you care about even one teenager, you'll want to read this book. Major Characters:With 600 different authors, there are no characters that stand apart except the unspecified and ever different "him", "her", "Mom" and "Dad" that are mentioned in some of the writings.Key Issues:This book has so many key issues: love, suicide, war, growing up, teen pregnancy, rising above, strength, angst, etc.; that there are NO key issues to stand out from the herd, so to speak-- it raises all kinds of issues to think about in terms of teenagers and how they are affected.This book would be a great spring-board for discussion with most high-schoolers.

    2019-05-29 11:04

    A newspaper asked teens to write their life's story, but using only six words. Those stories were all published in this book. 'I Can't Keep my own Secrets' is the inspiring stories of over 300 people. It proves that you don't need a whole book to tell a powerful story. This book is filled with tales of hardship, secrets, and teenage drama. I enjoyed this book because I found it interesting to read about more than just one person. It's interesting to sort of get to know a person, when you've only heard six words from them.I would recommend this book to anyone who likes poetry books, has some problems in their own life, or someone who feels that they can't stick with one book for a long time. I rated this book 4 out of 5 stars because I thought it was very interesting, but some of the little memoirs in it were not as powerful as others. Overall, this was a very good book though.

  • rachel keeler
    2019-06-12 12:07

    This book is fantastic. I love the thoughtfulness/challenge of six-words.As far as reading other people's six-words, it's interesting to me on the same level that Postsecret is. It's like peeking at someone's most intimate thoughts/feelings. Some of these teen ones are so well done, and so poignant. I was stopped in my reading, thinking about the girl/boy who had written them. Also, I'm mildly obsessed with the six-word thing now. I keep trying it out on my own life. For example, today's memoir could be: Tiredness dampens excitement about new things.Anyways, I clearly strongly recommend it, and think it would have huge teen appeal. It's easy to read, interesting, and self-reflective.

  • The Dreamer Reader
    2019-06-15 14:59

    It's a firework show of awesome!The Good: This is my first anthology and it totally sky rocketed through my expectations.Some made me want to track down these people and just give them a huge hug. Some made my day a whole lot brighter and better. Some really hit the nail on the head, made me think, "Damn straight!", and give them a huge round of applause. Some just made me snort milk out my nose because they were hilarious!But, what all of them did was make me feel less alone.The Bad: It may be a little too short for some... but, that's okay since it's a paperback! But yeah, it flies by really quickly (I read it in under 30 minutes) and by the time you blink, you're done.Overall: Read this book. You will love it.Grade: A+

  • Brittany
    2019-06-07 14:58

    This book is filled by six word quotes about 600 different teens.This was a fast and fun little book. At times making you laugh and other times making your eyes well up. Who knew that 6 words could say so much.Some of my favorites:"Laughed at all the wrong moments." -Kierra B."I never got my Hogwarts letter." -Deanna H."The Beatles really said it all." -Mary Kate C."Holden caught me in the rye." -Brittany F."I lost more than my innocence." -Angela G.I don't know if I would recommend you buying it, unless you really want a book with fun quotes. Convince your library to buy a couple copies and then check it out. This book is a good choice.

  • Nicole Hornyak
    2019-05-25 15:59

    Kind of in awe about reading all of the six-word memoirs in this book. I didn't know how only six words can express something so powerful in a persons life. Some of them were cute, well-played, happy, deep, and strong in wording. Some of them made my stomach drop because they were so good and/or so deep. I think poetry is a good mechanism to let it all out when you don't want to, especially for teenagers when they have a lot of changes going on with their lives. And these six-word memoirs were written by teenagers so it shows what they are dealing with, good or bad. This is a good read if you like to be moved (I guess you can say it that way...haha).

  • Sarah
    2019-05-25 11:01

    This collection of six word memoirs written by teens touches on subjects of love, loss, friendship, identity, beauty, and everything in between. The mood of the memoirs range anywhere from deeply sad or contemplative to comical and quirky. They are written in a variety of fonts and styles and some include artwork created by the teens. It is surprising how much power can be packed into six words and these teens know how to wield it. It is indexed and can be a good source for interesting quotes from teens, but it is also fun to read cover-to-cover.

  • Tamara
    2019-05-29 17:11

    I was a bit weary of teen memoirs, afraid they were going to be too angsty for my 30+ self, but some were quite fun and/or insightful. My favorites: Aspiration: colonize Mars. You're not invited. Not enough room in the margins. I'm just a simple human. Being. Note to all boys: I quit. The fireworks were gone by then. Life's full of "awkward turtle" moments. I want to launch a filibuster. I'm an Etch A Sketch, shaking. And ditto Becky's favorites: I never got my Hogwarts letter.The exits were entrances in disguise.

  • Rebecca
    2019-05-24 12:50

    More six-word memoirs, this time entirely by authors ages 13-19. I read bits of the introduction to booktalk this, then some selections. My personal favorites (and BTW, the "famous" teens wrote really bad ones):I just want to feel infinite.I will be that cat lady.I never got my Hogwarts letter. My status messages are about you.The exits were entrances in disguise.Take me back to swings, fireflies.Childhood fantasy: Living in a library.He only knew one word: meh.I am in a love pentagon.I was born differently -- original since.

  • Ashley Hackenmiller
    2019-05-25 11:11

    My thoughts: When I received this I had heard nothing but honestly I was intrigued. It was so unique and insightful! These teens were able to grasp so many aspects in teen lives these days within 6 words. Some made me smile while others made me sad. A couple even brought tears to my eyes. Go buy yourself a copy when it comes out. I LOVED IT!Recommendation: Anyone who wants a refreshing quick book with a real insight into teen minds.Listening to: Fearless (Taylor Swift) Mad (NeYo)

  • Heidi
    2019-05-25 17:59

    I think everyone should read this book; it is a quick read, but gives one a glimpse into the reality of hundreds of teens' lives. Inspired by the story that Ernest Hemingway was asked to write a six-word story (which ended up being “For sale: baby shoes, never worn”) this is a collection of six-word memoirs written by teenagers. Poignant, funny, thought-provoking. Apparently there are other similar six-word memoir books out there, which I plan to investigate.

  • Courtney
    2019-06-04 09:45

    This was so awesome! I am amazed at the way the teens touched my heart in just six words. This book made me think about my own life and what six words I would use for my memoir. All of the memoirs in this book were creative. Some made me smile and other made me want to cry. What six words would you use for your life?