Romantic Valentine’s Day in Six Words: Show Her the Sweet Creative Side

It seems the whole world has gone six-word crazy. Couples can join the craze, be creative and show each other how much love inspires on this Valentine’s Day.

Inspiration for Six-Word Memoirs

The idea of the six-word “book” or memoir originated with Ernest Hemingway. Known for his brevity and for being succinct in his writing, he boasted he could write a novel in six words. This is what he came up with: “For sale: baby shoes, never worn.” Those few words tell a tale of sadness, but they inspired Smith Magazine to begin a search for six-word memoirs from writers, “famous and obscure.”

The first book, Not Quite What I was Planning (Harper Perennial) edited by Rachel Fershleiser and Larry Smith, was a huge success, making the New York Times bestseller list for six weeks. It told tales of love found and love lost, of lives torn apart and brought together, of drama and tragedy, and of lives fully lived, all in six words. Life stories distilled.

Even Newsweek got in on the act. It now carries a section for writers to sum up the stories they’ve read in six words. Now in its new re-formatted version the magazine solicits six-word comments on the topic of the week. Thousands have written in and several are published in each edition.

Love Life in Six Words

The second book, Six-Word Memoir on Love & Heartbreak (Harper Perennial) also edited by Fershleiser and Smith, was a success too and focused exclusively on tales of lovers and of love lost and found. It is touted as “five hundred love stories, all in one book,” by the Smith Magazine website. The tales are sad: “It hurts worse in French” – Derek Pollard. And uplifting: “At twelve found soulmate, still together” – Nancy Miner. All creative and clever and inspiring. Putting together a little gift basket with the book, chocolates and of course flowers would certainly show a boyfriend or girlfriend he or she is special. But, writing personal six-word memoirs about the relationship would be even better.

Love Poem in Six Lines of Six words

It can be daunting, to write six-word “sweet-nothings.” Here is how. Couples should think about words describing feelings for that special person and write them down. It could be: “You make me feel so ________” (special, loved, inspired, fuzzy) whatever is personal to the couples relationship. Or it may be some act that is unique to just her . “You always kiss me good night.” To continue with the theme six lines of six words works well.

Yes, the whole world seems to have joined the cause of summarizing life and love in six words, but couples can join and still have it unique to their love. “I know you can do it!”


Writing an Effective Online Dating Profile

Writing an effective online dating profile that attracts people you are most interested in and compatible with can be a daunting task, but it needn’t be. By following some very simple tips you can make sure you are meeting people for coffee, dating people you enjoy being with and increasing your odds of finding that quality relationship you seek.

Be Positive

Your online profile is the first introduction to you that others see. Make it the most positive reflection of who you are. Stay away from laundry listing things you don’t like or want to avoid. Mention that you are looking for someone who is achieving his own goals and dreams in life is far more positive than stating if you don’t have a job, don’t contact me

Be Honest

Never lie. It will come back to haunt you. If you smoke, declare it. If you are trying to quit, declare it. Lying about your age, height, vices or lack of vices will not get you anywhere. You might get the first date, but you are guaranteed never to get any more. Deception is never a good way to begin a relationship because the very basis for a quality lasting relationship is trust. Don’t start eroding that foundation before you’ve even met the person.

Tell Enough But Not Too Much

The challenge of writing an online dating profile is to arouse interest and create the desire for the person viewing your profile to want to know more. Tell about yourself but resist the opportunity to tell all. You don’t need to mention you’ve been divorced twice or that you are currently on a debt repayment program since the divorce. There is plenty of time to tell that to the people who are interested enough to spend time with you past a second or third date. Remember, the online dating profile is a snapshot, not the full volume of you.

Let Your Personality Show Through

Try to avoid listing things you like to do and things you want in a prospective partner. Anyone can make a list. Share more about your perspectives, thoughts, goals, and lifestyle. Instead of simply saying “I like hanging out by the backyard pool in the summer”, say “During the summer months you’ll most likely find me poolside with a mixed drink, some close friends, steaks on the barbie and tunes from the iPod, while we swap stories about last weekend’s camping misadventures.” The latter gives the reader some insight into your preferences and your lifestyle. Your laid back personality that enjoys time with friends outdoors shows through in a memorable and engaging way.

Follow the Rules of Good Writing

You don’t have to be a published author to write a decent online profile but paying attention to spelling, punctuation and correct grammar will increase your odds of getting dates. People generally skim profiles the first time through to get a feel for the tone of the person writing the profile. If someone is interested they will go back and reread your profile in more depth. Profiles that are filled with spelling errors, typos, poor grammar and lacking punctuation are too difficult to read and are more likely to be passed over. People do make judgments about you based on how well you write. Make sure you get a friend to help if you are not confident about your writing ability.

Post Photos

A photo doesn’t tell all but it does let the person know you are confident enough in yourself and your appearance to post a photo. It indicates that you are a genuine person and not someone other than who you say you are. Post several photos of yourself to give people an idea of what you really look like. Make sure your photos are recent. Posting photos that are outdated or inaccurate are not helpful and can be considered deceptive when you finally meet the person. Include photos in a variety of settings and include some full body shots. This helps your prospective date get an idea of what you look like and what your lifestyle is like as well. When you meet for the first time your date will appreciate being able to recognize you. He/she will also figure that if you told the truth with your photo you probably told the truth with the rest of your profile too.

Read Other Profiles

If you are struggling with writer’s block, then take a break and do a reverse search. To do this, in the search boxes just enter in the preferences for the people who are most like you to see what others your age and sex are writing. For example, if you are a 35-year-old female, enter in the search criteria that you are male looking for women 30 to 40 years of age. This will give you a listing of all the women and their profiles. Read what other people are writing and how they are crafting their profiles. The really positive interesting ones will stand out. Maybe someone did something creative with their headline or their section that is in their own words that will spark ideas for something you can try. Maybe there is something every one else is doing (posting pictures of their boat, motorcycle, house, etc) that you can avoid doing. Simple little differences like this are sure to get noticed by the observant online dater.

Remember, it is never okay to copy another person’s writing or take their words. You have to use your own, but looking at how others approached the same task is sometimes a good place to start if you simply need ideas.

Following these few simple steps when writing your online dating profile will be valuable in helping you get dates with the people whose company you will most enjoy. It takes some time, a little bit of thought and effort but if you end up in a lasting relationship as a result, won’t you think the effort was well worth it?