Amber Lea Starfire


Journaling Prompts for Mothers 3

SOMETIMES IT SEEMS that I have been a mother for a very, very long time. My eldest son was nineteen when my youngest was born, and though they are all adults now, they will always be my children — always a source of care, concern, and love. Being a mother […]


Dream Journaling – An Interview with Nathan Ohren 3

I’M DELIGHTED to welcome Nathan Ohren, a fellow journal writing teacher and promoter of mindful living, to the Writing Through Life blog. I “met” Nathan online a couple of years ago through his JournalTalk podcast. We’ve stayed in touch and continue to share ideas with each other around ways to help others […]


If You Can Write a Letter, You Can Start Your Memoir 1

WHEN IT COMES TO WRITING MEMOIR, the most frequently asked question I receive is, “How do I start?” My brief answer is, “You start by starting. You write what comes. Don’t worry about the form or the content at this point. Just write.” And that’s true. But what would-be memoirists […]


Word for Writers, Part 11 – Creating and Using Styles 7

WHEN A WRITER HAS NOT YET LEARNED how to use Styles, she applies formatting manually. For example, to format a title, she might select the title, apply bold formatting, make it a slightly larger font size, and center it. Applying formatting in this manner is called “direct formatting.” If you […]


Blogtalk: A Roundup of Memoir Writing Tips 4

WRITING A MEMOIR, whether it’s your first go-round or your tenth, is a daunting and sometimes discouraging undertaking. It requires a certain amount of grit, determination, and courage. It can also be helpful to read how others have done it and gain wisdom from their experiences. So this week, I’ve rounded […]


How to Write a Scene 11

 A good writer can conjure a landscape and its peoples to live inside you, and the best writers make you feel they’ve disclosed their soft underbellies. — Mary Karr, The Art of Memoir WHEN YOU READ A MEMOIR, what about that author’s story evokes emotion in you? What makes the […]


What Makes a Memoir “Good”? 11

WITH THE APPROACH of St Patrick’s Day, I got the idea that it would be appropriate — and fun — to write a piece about taking writing inspiration from Irish memoirs, meaning memoirs written by Irish authors. But I quickly realized that aside from Angela’s Ashes, that great classic of […]


Word for Writers, Part 10 – Formatting Text 8

OF ALL THE FEATURES offered by word processing programs, you may be most familiar with formatting text and paragraphs — commonly changing fonts, bolding, italicizing, and underlining. In its essence, formatting involves selecting text and then applying a format command using menus or buttons. In this article, I’ll show you […]


Entanglements: Writing About Family 9

WHEN YOU SET OFF TO WRITE ABOUT YOUR LIFE, you will end up, at some point, wonder how much to include about your family members. Especially if you’re revealing family secrets, which memoirs tend to do. Even when journaling about family, you may worry that family members will some day […]