One Sentence

In one sentence:

After nine years, I've decided to shut down One Sentence.

In more than one sentence:

With no new sentences approved in a year, I doubt this is a surprise to anyone, but I wanted to make it official and take a second to say goodbye.

One Sentence started as a simple blog post in March 2002. Four years later (and just a couple of months after Twitter started), I decided to launch it as its own site. In the subsequent years, it became a Popular Site On the Internet That People Liked (tm). It was tweeted about by dooce and Demi Moore. At its peak popularity, it was getting a million visits a month. I was interviewed on a few radio shows and came close a number of times to a One Sentence book deal (considering some of the sites that got book deals, I'm still trying to figure out how this never worked out). Over 100,000 sentences were submitted.

By 2015, though, the idea of telling your story in a short amount of space has become the norm and maybe even past its prime. Combine that with the simple fact of life getting in the way leaving less and less time for sentence curation and site maintenance, and you've got a sure sign it's time for a graceful exit.

I imagine there are a few questions I should answer:

What's happening to the site?

For now, this page is it -- the hosting was expensive and I need a little time to regroup and figure out what will happen next. I will most likely create a static read-only version of the site. I believe One Sentence is a culturally important artifact of the mid-to-late 2000s and the content should remain accessible. But with a full-time job, family, etc. it'll take a little while for me to get there. In the meantime, before shutting down the site, I made sure the Wayback Machine has a current copy.

Even though One Sentence has only been closed for 78886 minutes, I miss it! How can I get my fix?

Relive the days of yore via the aforementioned Wayback Machine (and then donate to the Internet Archive for all the great services they offer).

I want my sentences! How do I get them?

If you submitted sentences and want copies of them, I want to make sure you are able to get them. Since One Sentence didn't have account functionality, for privacy's sake sentences will only be able to be mailed back to the original e-mail address they were submitted from. I will be getting an export facility in place soon and you'll be able find it here when it's ready.

Dude, I'm sad. Can I tell you how I feel?

Please do. Drop me a note at one -at- onesentence.org.


I want to thank everyone that e-mailed (and that I irresponsibly didn't reply to), particularly in the last year asking, "Why no new sentences?" I want to thank everyone that had a kind word over the years. I want to thank the wonderful folks that found the site worthy of tweeting, blogging, writing newspaper articles, or interviewing me on the radio about. And, of course, I want to thank anyone and everyone who ever submitted a sentence. You all are awesome.

Be well and I'll be in touch!

... Ryan