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memoir vs. autobiographical fiction

Memoir vs. Autobiographical Fiction? Which is Best?

I sometimes get asked this question and I have to confess that my reaction is firm. There is a clear difference—a chasm really—between the choice of writing memoir vs. autobiographical fiction.While one has a choice to write one or the other, one does not have a choice to call one by the name of the […]

writing a non-fiction book

Writing a Non-Fiction Book

A common lament, I hear from writers goes like this, “I wanted a book, and I got off to a good start writing a memoir. I’ve always wanted to write a book, but then I just stopped. I don’t know why.” What I have sometimes found is that people approach memoir-writing as an easy access […]

Memoir or Autobiographical Fiction

Which to Write: Memoir or Autobiographical Fiction? There is a Difference!

Should I write memoir or autobiographical fiction? I sometimes get asked this and I have to confess that my reaction is firm. I don’t believe particularly in an either/or possibility. There is a clear difference—a chasm really—between the choice of memoir or autobiographical fiction. While one has a choice to write one or the other, […]

memoir fiction

Memoir Versus Fiction, or Is Memoir Fiction?

Is memoir fiction? I emphatically don’t agree that memoir is fiction. Although a memoir invariably uses fiction techniques—and we will look at one in this post it must be an as-much-as-possible true accounting of an experience.

scenes and dialogue

Three Tips For Using Fiction Techniques in a Memoir

We all love well-told stories. We love the entertainment, the sound effects, the punchy plot built around solid characterization. As we share stories in our everyday conversations, we inevitably use fiction techniques to keep our listeners’ attention and interest. When we say “And then she said…,” we are using dialogue – that’s a fiction technique.

Turning-Memories-Into-Memoirs-Denis-Ledoux-Picture

Is It a Memoir or Autobiographical Fiction ?

What Makes It Memoir or Autobiographical Fiction? I read a memoir that did well here in Maine (it’s by an excellent Maine writer)—I can’t vouch for its reach in the rest of the country. I’m left wondering whether the author was writing memoir or autobiographical fiction. It’s an interesting book, very well-written in terms of […]

4ProvenWays

Have you ever succumbed to this memoir shortcut?

“I just added a little bit of fiction to move the story along,” you say, to explain a memoir shortcut you have just taken, joining the ranks of such pseudo memoirist as James Frey in A Million Pieces? Or, perhaps the ranks of Frank McCourt who fictionalized long dialogs in Angela’s Ashes. (No one remembers […]