WoW :D
8:14 PM


We'll be brief: Hemingway once wrote a story in just six words ("For sale: baby shoes, never worn.") and is said to have called it his best work. So we asked sci-fi, fantasy, and horror writers from the realms of books, TV, movies, and games to take a shot themselves.


Dozens of our favorite auteurs put their words to paper, and five master graphic designers took them to the drawing board. Sure, Arthur C. Clarke refused to trim his ("God said, 'Cancel Program GENESIS.' The universe ceased to exist."), but the rest are concise masterpieces.


Failed SAT. Lost scholarship. Invented rocket.
- William Shatner


Computer, did we bring batteries? Computer?
- Eileen Gunn


Vacuum collision. Orbits diverge. Farewell, love.
- David Brin


Gown removed carelessly. Head, less so.
- Joss Whedon


Automobile warranty expires. So does engine.
- Stan Lee


Machine. Unexpectedly, I’d invented a time
- Alan Moore


Longed for him. Got him. Shit.
- Margaret Atwood


His penis snapped off; he’s pregnant!
- Rudy Rucker


From torched skyscrapers, men grew wings.
- Gregory Maguire


Internet “wakes up?” Ridicu -
no carrier.
- Charles Stross


With bloody hands, I say good-bye.
- Frank Miller


Wasted day. Wasted life. Dessert, please.
- Steven Meretzky


“Cellar?” “Gate to, uh … hell, actually.”
- Ronald D. Moore


Epitaph: Foolish humans, never escaped Earth.
- Vernor Vinge


It cost too much, staying human.
- Bruce Sterling


We kissed. She melted. Mop please!
- James Patrick Kelly


It’s behind you! Hurry before it
- Rockne S. O’Bannon


I’m your future, child. Don’t cry.
- Stephen Baxter


1940: Young Hitler! Such a cantor!
- Michael Moorcock


Lie detector eyeglasses perfected: Civilization collapses.
- Richard Powers


I’m dead. I’ve missed you. Kiss … ?
- Neil Gaiman


The baby’s blood type? Human, mostly.
- Orson Scott Card


Kirby had never eaten toes before.
- Kevin Smith


Rained, rained, rained, and never stopped.
- Howard Waldrop


To save humankind he died again.
- Ben Bova


We went solar; sun went nova.
- Ken MacLeod


Husband, transgenic mistress; wife: “You cow!”
- Paul Di Filippo


“I couldn’t believe she’d shoot me.”
- Howard Chaykin


Don’t marry her. Buy a house.
- Stephen R. Donaldson


Broken heart, 45, WLTM disabled man.
- Mark Millar


TIME MACHINE REACHES FUTURE!!! … nobody there …
- Harry Harrison


Tick tock tick tock tick tick.
- Neal Stephenson


Easy. Just touch the match to
- Ursula K. Le Guin


New genes demand expression -- third eye.
- Greg Bear


K.I.A. Baghdad, Aged 18 - Closed Casket
- Richard K. Morgan


WORLD'S END. Sic transit gloria Monday.
- Gregory Benford


Epitaph: He shouldn't have fed it.
- Brian Herbert


Batman Sues Batsignal: Demands Trademark Royalties.
- Cory Doctorow


Heaven falls. Details at eleven.
- Robert Jordan


Bush told the truth. Hell froze.
- William Gibson


whorl. Help! I'm caught in a time
- Darren Aronofsky and Ari Handel


Nevertheless, he tried a third time.
- James P. Blaylock


God to Earth: “Cry more, noobs!”
- Marc Laidlaw


Help! Trapped in a text adventure!
- Marc Laidlaw


Thought I was right. I wasn't.
- Graeme Gibson


Lost, then found. Too bad.
- Graeme Gibson


Three to Iraq. One came back.
- Graeme Gibson


Rapture postponed. Ark demanded! Which one?
- David Brin


Dinosaurs return. Want their oil back.
- David Brin


Bang postponed. Not Big enough. Reboot.
- David Brin


Temporal recursion. I'm dad and mom?
- David Brin


Time Avenger's mistaken! It wasn't me...
- David Brin


Democracy postponed. Whence franchise? Ask Diebold...
- David Brin


Cyborg seeks egg donor, object ___.
- David Brin


Deadline postponed. Five words enough...?
- David Brin


Metrosexuals notwithstanding, quiche still lacks something.
- David Brin


Brevity’s virtue? Wired saves adspace. Subscribe!
- David Brin


Death postponed. Metastasized cells got organized.
- David Brin


Microsoft gave us Word. Fiat lux?
- David Brin


Mind of its own. Damn lawnmower.
- David Brin


Singularity postponed. Datum missing. Query Godoogle?
- David Brin


Please, this is everything, I swear.
- Orson Scott Card


I saw, darling, but do lie.
- Orson Scott Card


Osama’s time machine: President Gore concerned.
- Charles Stross


Sum of all fears: AND patented.
- Charles Stross


Ships fire; princess weeps, between stars.
- Charles Stross


Mozilla devastates Redmond, Google’s nuke implicated.
- Charles Stross


Will this do (lazy writer asked)?
- Ken MacLeod


Cryonics: Disney thawed. Mickey gnawed. Omigawd.
- Eileen Gunn


WIRED stimulates the planet: Utopia blossoms!
- Paul Di Filippo


Clones demand rights: second Emancipation Proclamation.
- Paul Di Filippo


MUD avatars rebel: virtual Independence Day.
- Paul Di Filippo


We crossed the border; they killed us.
- Howard Waldrop


H-bombs dropped; we all died.
- Howard Waldrop


Your house is mine: soft revolution.
- Howard Waldrop


Warskiing; log; prop in face.
- Howard Waldrop


The Axis in WWII: haiku! Gesundheit.
- Howard Waldrop


Salinger story: three koans in fountain.
- Howard Waldrop


Finally, he had no more words.
- Gregory Maguire


There were only six words left.
- Gregory Maguire


In the beginning was the word.
- Gregory Maguire


Commas, see, add, like, nada, okay?
- Gregory Maguire


Weeping, Bush misheard Cheney’s deathbed advice.
- Gregory Maguire


Corpse parts missing. Doctor buys yacht.
- Margaret Atwood


Starlet sex scandal. Giant squid involved.
- Margaret Atwood


He read his obituary with confusion.
- Steven Meretzky


Time traveler's thought: "What's the password?"
- Steven Meretzky


I win lottery. Sun goes nova.
- Steven Meretzky


Steve ignores editor's word limit and
- Steven Meretzky


Leia: "Baby's yours." Luke: "Bad news…"
- Steven Meretzky


Parallel universe. Bush, destitute, joins army.
- Steven Meretzky


Dorothy: "Fuck it, I'll stay here."
- Steven Meretzky



Wired - Very Short Stories

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tea with sugar gives me the cramps