Six Word Slice of Life: Eavesdropping

(For this month’s Slice of Life Challenge with Two Writing Teachers, I am aiming to do Six Word Slices most days, with some extended slices on other days.)

Context: One of the important skills for Slice of Life writing, I have found, is the ability to respectfully eavesdrop on the conversations of others.

I was in the small local library last night, picking up some books, when the librarian behind counter — an elderly librarian with a grumpy exterior but an active mind, who often engages me in discussions about the books I have chosen, particularly graphic novels — began a conversation with the man in front of me about the book he had pulled from the shelves. It was about Geology and stories, and she went into a story of her own about studying at Yale and taking a Geology course that interested her, and who was this author, and then proceeded to flip through the book, reading the biography and noting that she teaches at nearby Mount Holyoke College.

Meanwhile, the line is getting longer behind me, and the man at the check-out is feeling a little antsy. I just smiled at him, giving him the look that there was no rush, that discussions about books in a library is perfectly in tune with the experience. Meanwhile, I leaned forward to listen in, and wondered, too, about the book, and I tried to steal a glance at the cover as she finally checked him out and sent him on his way.

“Patrons find the most interesting books,” she said to me, as I handed her my card and we started our own dance about my choices for reading.

Thus, my six words:

Six Word Slice of Life Eavesdropping

Peace (storm a’coming),

  1. I love that you see beyond the grumpy exterior of the librarian and appreciate the conversations. Now, I wonder…what did you check out?

  2. Oh I love how you build the context of the moment and then distill the story in six words. Masterful writer that you are! I will have to try this myself soon.

  3. I can only echo the comments from above: hearing the context for your 6 word slice was lovely. Felt like I was there, waiting, perhaps not as patiently as you. 😉

  4. Yes. These moments are the windows into all the lives we can’t live. How else can we expect to suck this world dry?

  5. I loved the story and the build of the experience and finally, the summation of it all – in six simple words. Brilliant~

  6. Like several others, I’m fascinated by the back story behind each of these slices. And then how you distill it into six words. Wow, wow, wow! That’s some powerful writing my friend!

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