Category Archives: Memoir Monday

The Gift of Writing a Memoir

HarsH ReaLiTy

As I collaborate on another book to be released this summer, I reflect on anxiously waiting for my memoir, Untangled, A Story of Resilience, Courage, and Triumph to go live on Amazon, just 19 months ago. What a wonderful, unexpected and humbling time it has been.

I took a huge risk by writing and publishing my memoir. My entire life was focused on keeping quiet, not telling, protecting those I loved, or who loved me. It took me a long time to understand that by keeping quiet, I was actually protecting the people who hurt me in my life. Writing Untangled was a way to announce in a really big way, that I will not keep quiet any longer.

I literally went from telling no one but my therapist about my past to throwing my arms up, and saying, okay….what the f**k, let’s go for it, and tell everyone at once…

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Puzzles, Writing and the Human Mind

Pearl S. Buck Writing Center

By Anne K. Kaler

Puzzle DoneIt is finished. The puzzle, that is. The writing is never finished.

The writing is truly never finished, never polished enough, never edited sufficiently because the story never fully ends in my mind. The characters and events continue to exist in my internal universe. I am never satisfied because I feel as if I have abandoned my created children on an alien planet without a working spaceship.

That’s why I do puzzles when I write. I need the constant encouragement that there is an end in sight — that there actually is a last puzzle piece to plunk into place, the only place in the material universe that it will fit.

So why do I persist in both endeavors?

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How to establish plot points in your memoir

Monica Lee

blogging-bonanza-bugAs we work our way through the month-long blogging bonanza celebrating the launch on March 28 of Truth, Dare, Double Dare, Promise or Repeat: On Finding the Meaning of “Like” in 1982, we’ll begin each week with Structure Sunday where I’ll share some important elements to consider when writing a memoir. Today, I’m examining how to structure your story.

* * *

Absence doesn’t make the story grow fonder when it comes to writing.

In the middle of writing Truth, Dare, Double Dare, Promise or Repeat: On Finding the Meaning of “Like” in 1982 (literally, the middle — I had 34,000 words on paper), I got stuck. I didn’t know where I was going, and I was losing track of where I had been.

How does a writer get back into a half-finished work and make sense of it?

For me, it was an outline. Some writers like to free-write without…

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Digging Deep for Meaning in Memoirs

The Accidental Writer

If my memoirs were only a capture of the facts and events as they’ve happened, I’d be able to publish one on my books this year and likely the other one next year.

But writing memoir is not about just chronicling facts and events. Writing memoir is about recalling and interpreting facts and events into something meaningful.

Yes, the events of our lives happened. BUT WHAT DOES IT ALL MEAN?

“What it means” is the whole point of writing memoir. For many of us who write or read memoirs, it is what drives us to write our own and to voraciously read someone else’s. We don’t want to regurgitate the facts or read someone else’s regurgitated facts. We want to piece together the clues of our own lives and determine what it all means. We want to read someone else’s clues and see what they believe it all means compared…

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Remembrance in Memoir: What Does It Take?

Diane Taylor

Dear Steve,

I’m really glad you asked this question in my memoir writing workshop last week:

         “What three qualities do people who complete their memoir have?”

Since then, I’ve consulted two authors of published memoirs who sent me their three qualities. Then, I came up with four. All in all, we now have ten personal qualities that help lead to a completed memoir.

Ronald Mackay, author of A Scotsman Abroad http://editura.mttlc.ro/ronald-mackay-scotsman-abroad.html (about a two-year period of his life in Romania, and published on line by the University of Bucharest in 2016) sent me these:

“Be daring”: I found I needed to ‘screw my courage to the sticking place’ just to overcome self-doubt and the fear of appearing self-indulgent by writing about my own life.

“Avoid temptation”: When I worked in Bucharest, I was a ‘babe-in-the-woods’. Nevertheless, I decided to write from that ingenuous perspective and not as…

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Levels of Crazy

Exclusive Inflictions

It never ceases to amaze me
How many levels there are to crazy
When you stand back and look
You realize it’s not a fictional book

Memoirs at fingertips, waiting
All the while I’m here anticipating
The backlash that has me debating
If the truth is even worth saying

The Who, when, where and why
Changed to protect innocent lives
From the incriminating evidence
To keep from being that elephant

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Struggle is universal. People love reading stories about people triumphing over obstacles, overcoming bad circumstances and abuse, and redeeming themselves. We watch them in movies and read them in books. And you don’t have to look far to find suffering and loss in the human experience. Lots of people have amazing stories, and unfortunately those stories aren’t always pleasant. If you’re writing a memoir, or thinking about it, then perhaps you’ve got some difficult stories to tell, too.

How to Write a Memoir About a Painful Experience: 6 Tips

 

#ExcerptWeek – D. G. Kaye @pokecubster

The Write Stuff

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Today, I’m very happy to welcome D. G. Kaye to #ExcerptWeek here on The Write Stuff. Deb has been having all kinds of frustrating issues this last week, with both her ability to comment on this and other blogs, and issues getting her latest book formatted and published. I’m happy to say that things are starting to look up, and proud to present this excerpt for your reading pleasure. As always, please remember to share far and wide. And now, the floor is yours, Deb. Take it away!

P.S. I Forgive You

P.S. I Forgive You is a sequel to Conflicted Hearts, a memoir about my narcissistic mother, and the psychological hold she had on me by instilling guilt and fear when her demands weren’t complied with, and the heartache she bestowed on her loved ones.

This sequel is a stand alone in its own right. It’s a new journey…

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