Memoir & Legacy Writing


Are You Brave Enough to Write your Story? 8

SOME PEOPLE only write their stories when they’ve got nothing to lose. But others write their truth even if they’re risking their reputation, their livelihood or their close relationships in order to do so. Certainly we can see this in books and movies. Take The Help as an example. This […]


Why We Love Memoir 2

WHAT IS IT ABOUT MEMOIR that fascinates and draws us to it in a way that fiction, while entertaining and enlightening, does not? Why do we love reading such intimate, first-person stories of challenge, struggle, and triumph? Is it, as some would claim, a tabloid-style voyeuristic curiosity? Is is that […]


Why You Should Conduct Interviews for Your Memoir 1

WRITING MEMOIR CAN BE A LONELY ENDEAVOR. Day after day, for months — maybe years — you dig through your memories for details of events that fit into the theme of your story. You search through photo albums, personal journal entries (if you’re lucky to have them), google newspaper archives, […]


Writing Memoir: Searching for the Truth 5

FINDING TRUTH IS THE ELEMENTAL TASK OF MEMOIR, and what memoirists struggle with most as we write our stories. I have been reflecting on this aspect of memoir, since reading Ann Churcher’s post, “Memoir Writing: Can’t Find My Way Back Home,” in which she writes: Searching for the truth has […]


Writing Memoir: Where’s the Conflict? 3

WRITING MEMOIR IS A LOT LIKE WRITING FICTION — only with all the made-up parts left out. You have scene (place and time), which is inhabited by characters, dialogue, and action. You have a point of view, usually first person, through which the narration occurs. In addition, memoir also includes reflection, in […]


How to Keep Writing When the Going Gets Rough 5

ANYONE WHO HAS WRITTEN A MEMOIR KNOWS that it’s hard work. Not at the beginning, necessarily, but when you’re part way through, and that nice, round idea you had of your story has become fragmented by scenes and summaries of scenes, and reflections about those scenes The memories aren’t clear […]

Uphill climb

My Takeaways from the San Miguel Writers’ Conference 8

“[The plot] of personal essay, its drama, its suspense, consists in watching how far the essayist can drop past his or her psychic defenses toward deeper levels of honesty.” – Phillip Lopate LAST WEEK, I had the privilege of attending the twelfth annual San Miguel de Allende Writers’ Conference. I confess, […]