How important is theme in a memoir? Theme in a memoir is absolutely important! Here’s is a distinction between a family-focused autobiography and a memoir that, I hope, will help you to appreciate the value and the role of theme in a memoir.
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Theme influences choices for every element in the story: plot development, characterization, and setting. Is theme important. You bet it is!
Underlying all of your stories is its theme. The theme is really a message, the global way in which you understand your story — either in its entirety or in its
As you articulate your theme, ask yourself if this theme is really yours–does it reflect your present understanding of your story and of life itself?
You imbue the whole of your story with your theme and it, in turn, influences the choice of every element in your story—even when you’re not aware of it. Consciously shaping your theme can make your memoir.
When you include feelings in your memoir, your reader’s interest is heightened and they are drawn into the story. It is helpful to make a list of different words to describe the feelings that you will use in your memoir.
While most of us have many vivid memories of other times in our lives, it remains true that we have forgotten many sense details of our experience. These sense details are often elements that will draw the reader into the story. It is important to gather details for a memoir.
The bigger picture in a memoir is essential for your reader (and you!) to better understand the period of your life you are writing about. A memoir that is set in the historical context of your time, even with just a few references to events, broadens your personal story into a larger story for your […]
Writing the setting as a character of your memoir will tell us a lot about you and the people who were in your life. Many fiction writers give setting the prime role of character in their novels.
Travel to the place that figures in your memoir. If you can do so physically, that is great. If however you need to travel to this place in your mind – because it is too far away or because somehow the locale no longer exists, you can always get there through visualizations.