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writing a first draft

5 Better Ways to Describe The People in Your Memoir 

Without other people, our lives and our memoirs risk becoming dull. Although ideas are pivotal for many individuals, relationships are even more commanding. We are intrigued with who other people are and how they function. “Who’s that? What are they doing? Where did they come from?” These are question we want answered. To write a strong story, capitalize on this interest. [Free Membership required to read more. See below. ]

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support for writing your memoir

What would support for writing your memoir book look like for you?

While some people succeed at writing an interesting and meaningful memoir on their own, the fact is many people need both more technical expertise than they now have and more emotional support for the long effort they are undertaking. Many find the task of writing a memoir—however urgent and compelling—to be somewhat daunting and, if […]

The Memoir Network

How Long Does It Take to Write a Memoir?

Sometimes, years after I’ve heard from someone that he is writing a memoir, I will connect with the writer again. Perhaps it’s three or four or five years later, but the writer is working on the same memoir. I don’t get it. So I ask politely, “What has snagged the memoir?” In short…

I has taken that writer too long to write his memoir!

How long does it take to write a memoir?

Well, I don’t actually know the answer  to “how long does it take to write a memoir?” What I know is a memoir needn’t take so long to compose. A memoir—and interesting and meaningful one—can be written in 12 to 24 months.

If that’s so, then why do some memoirs drag on?

Here are some reasons your memoir may be taking you too long.

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too much backstory

Too Much Backstory–Are you making memoir writing more difficult than necessary?

How much backstory is too much? Today we will discuss how to avoid too much backstory in your memoir.

I hope this is not you…

You are memoir writing about a time when you—alas—got fired from your job. As you write about this, you throw in your college studies, how much you loved your major and how eager you were for the workplace. Then you go on to write about the catty politics of the office from which you got fired. You even throw in a vignette about your boss’s spouse who came onto you and another snippet about the wasteful (and tasteless) redecorating your boss commissioned. For good measure, you describe the company’s history and…

STOP!!!

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working with a memoir ghostwriter

Working With a Memoir Ghostwriter – Six Tips

Get the most out of  working with a memoir ghostwriter

What a relief to have finally decided to start working with a memoir ghostwriter. The future of your relationship will depend, however, on how well and clearly you agree on the financial and procedural aspects of your collaboration. Be sure you come to an agreement on the following topics.

1. Work ought to be performed by the hour rather than by the project.

While it is tempting to choose a per-project fee, a project-fee arrangement is a troubling one. As the payer, you want more for your money. As the provider, the ghostwriter wants to minimize changes to the manuscript so as to be able to fulfill the project objectives in a way that is profitable for him/her. A project fee leads to conflict. A per-hour fee, while it would seem to lead to the ghostwriter stretching the project out so he can charge you more, usually this is not true. The ghostwriter is a professional with other projects to move on to after yours is done.

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writing about non-events

Writing about Non-Events: They Belong in Your Memoir Writing

When writing about non-events, it can seem like they don’t belong in a memoir. But, often, non-events can have been more difficult than the “events” that do challenge us.

What are Non-Events?

While having coffee in a restaurant recently, I saw a man and a 14- or 15-year-old boy whom I took to be his son walk in together and order. Then, carrying their trays, they sat at a table near me. At first, they were both silent, and then the boy began to speak. He spoke quite a bit. I couldn’t hear the words, but he seemed to be talking about something that had happened to him. The man occasionally nodded his head in response, but I heard him talk only once. The boy kept speaking. His head and arms were involved. He evidently expected responses which, other than via a nod, were not forthcoming.

Perhaps I fantasized elements of my own life, but I imagined the boy wanting his father to answer, to engage in an exchange with him but nothing of the sort happened. At one point, as the boy was speaking, his father got up and went to the trash basket and dumped the contents of his tray in and waited for the boy to come do the same. Seeming to understand that the meal was over from the father’s point of view, the boy got up and dumped his things into the trash also and the two walked out together.

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Memoir Writing

Stay in the Memoir Conversation: Be Part of a Writing Community

What does writing a memoir have to do with a writing community?

Show me your friends and I will show you your future.

There’s a bit of folk wisdom—or there should be if there isn’t—that goes somewhat like the above.

Isn’t our belief in the truth of “show me your friends and I will show you your future” why we are reassured when we see our children hanging out with “nice” kids, children who are respectful and serious about school, who benefit from healthy pastimes—drama club, sports, an interesting job—and who find ways to enjoy themselves that is not injurious  to themselves or to others? Why? Of course, when we see our children with such friends, we know they are learning, or having reinforced, habits that will serve them well as adults.

How does this apply to writing a memoir? Well …

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right memoir coach

How to Know if You Have the Right Memoir Coach

How do you know if you have the right memoir coach? The guidelines below will help you evaluate your writing coach prospect to ascertain if you are choosing the right memoir coach for you. This article contains evaluation guidelines centered on the availability of the right memoir coach.

1. Can your coach work with you so that you meet your deadline?

As you develop your memoir project, you may become aware of a natural deadline, such as a family reunion or a birthday. The right memoir coach for you will be able to meet your date. This deadline should be discussed before you and the coach commit to each other.

Your deadline may also simply focus on a time when you would like to be finished. This is a completely internal deadline.

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