FIRST THINGS: On the Square

Ernest Hemingway was once challenged to write a story in six words, which he did. (I’ll get to what he wrote.) Black Book magazine issued the same challenge to a slew of well-known contemporary authors. Norman Mailer wrote this: “Satan — Jehovah — fifteen rounds. A draw.” John Updike: “Forgive me!’ ‘What for?’ ‘Never mind.'” None of them come close to what Hemingway wrote: “For sale: baby shoes, never used.”

 

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