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Read Like a Writer, Part 1: West With the Night - First Impressions

Read Like a Writer, Part 1: West With the Night - First Impressions

FIRST IMPRESSIONS - *West With the Night, by Beryl Markham Though this memoir is considered a classic, I had never heard of it or of Beryl Markham before a Writing Through Life survey respondent suggested it. I was immediately intrigued by the idea of a woman who, raised in Kenya during the early 1900s, refused to live the “normal” and expected life of most women of her time (of any time, really). Instead, she trained race horses, became a free-lance pilot, and then proceeded to become the first person — man or woman — to fly solo across the Atlantic Ocean, east[...]
8 Life-Writing and Memoir Blogs You'll Want to Follow

8 Life-Writing and Memoir Blogs You'll Want to Follow

IN ADDITION TO WRITING AND TEACHING about journaling and memoir writing, I enjoy visiting other journaling and memoir writing sites for additional inspiration, new approaches, and different perspectives on writing about and through life. What I have discovered in doing so, is that there are really very few blogs out there that consistently offer quality content on these topics. Don’t get me wrong—there are many, many blogs written by memoir authors and proponents of journal writing. It’s just that the majority are either focused on selling products (books, art supplies, memberships, etc.) and/or the blog posts are personal writing from[...]
Writing Prompt: The 5 Values That Shape Your Work

Writing Prompt: The 5 Values That Shape Your Work

What are the core values that shape your work? I pose this question today as a multi-purpose writing prompt that can help you more fully understand the underlying beliefs that sustain your worldview and drive your life’s work. Why “multi-purpose”? I’ll get to that in a moment. First, let’s use this as a “regular” kind of journaling prompt and ask, “What are the five core values that shape my work as a ____________”?  You can use this prompt to examine the primary values that shape your work as a writer, mother, manager, gardener, or pilot. The type of work does not matter.[...]
Introducing the Read Like a Writer Memoir Series

Introducing the Read Like a Writer Memoir Series

BACK IN NOVEMBER, I asked if you’d like to see a Reading for Writers series focused on memoir, in which we would analyze one book each quarter together. You responded with a resounding “Yes!” and with many, many excellent title suggestions, ranging from classic to contemporary memoir. In making the book selections for the year, I decided I wanted to include an equal number of male and female authors. I have a rather selfish reason for this: I tend to be drawn more to memoirs written by women and feel I need to broaden my scope. I also wanted to work with[...]
How to Set - And Rock - Your Writing Goals

How to Set - And Rock - Your Writing Goals

WE'RE ALREADY more than halfway through the second week of January, so you may be wondering why I am writing about goals. After the hundreds of articles about New Year’s resolutions and goals all over the Internet, aren’t we over this thing already? Isn’t it time to move on? If you’re the type of person who loves to make lists and set goals each year, you may have already completed yours. Even so, read on, because you may find some tips here to make your goals more achievable. Or if you’re the type of person who hates goals because they seem like cages[...]