This is for all you memoir writers out there – those writing life stories, family histories and such.
One of the BiGGeST causes of procrastination in memoir writing is worrying about the overview, the big story.
But memoir writing is a lot like assembling a photo album. The focus needs to be on:
1) getting clear snapshots and
2) arranging them in some sort of order. (You will see where there are gaps and you need to go back and fill in. That’s okay.)
In the end, the BIG story will emerge. Often the writer discovers the bigger story in the writing. It happens. A lot!
I’ve tinkered away at the craft of personal experience writing for some time. I’ve had success and I’ve had a lot of fun teaching others and getting to hear their stories. I recently took what felt like a big turn, AWAY from the 1,200-2,000 word article and TOWARD a much bigger work. And guess what? It’s not that much different! It’s still about capturing the little moments, the ‘snapshots.’ They tell the little stories that go into making the bigger story.
BTW, I so enjoy reading what some of you are putting out there in the family history/memoir genre. Keep writing!
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