Writing your memoirs is so personal and cathartic. You can resolve issues in your head that you didn’t realise were still causing you pain. Alternatively, you may find that you remember events long since forgotten.
Your memoirs represent you. They are a testament to the life you have led, the dreams you have accomplished or the goals you have set yourself that you will accomplish by the time you retire, or pass the baton on to the next generation.
There are some very loose rules that you should abide by, and these are:
- Only discuss the events you want people to know about.
- Be honest about the events that took place, it is perfectly acceptable to write from your point of view
- Be mindful of the reader and what they will get out of reading your memoirs
- Decide on the format of the memoirs. Will you create a book or an audio book?
- Think of the length of your memoirs. You may not want to write War and Peace, but we all have a story to tell.
- Will your memoirs be funny or serious?
- Will you make a passive income from your memoirs? For example, giving talks at schools, clubs and on the TV/Radio. Will you sell your memoirs online?
- Are your memoirs for family and friends only?
- Do you want to include photographs, if so, make sure you have the authorisation to use the photographs, especially if other people are in the photograph?
- Do you have the support of your family members? This can make writing your memoirs so much easier.
Before you write your Memoirs
Before you write your memoirs, create a plan of what you want to include. Are you a business owner and want to discuss how you created your business from nothing and sold it for thousands? Are you a homemaker and loved every aspect of making a home for your family? Did you travel around the world and met some interesting people that had a profound effect on your life?
We all thrive on stories. What is yours?
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I use to dream of being a Writer!
I would love to write but don’t have the time!
I don’t know where to start, but I have a story!
Questions and statements I often hear from people who would like to become an author, a writer, or publish their memoirs or family memoirs. I can sympathise. When I started writing my books and publishing my author’s books, it was a piece of common ground.
I had a fantastic tip form a young writer who was starting a career as a journalist, short and to the point.
“Just do it, don’t sit there thinking you will write war and peace. Stop making excuses and sit in front of the computer and write.”
Thanks Jack, that is what I did and what I tell my authors to do. In fiction, the story might take a few twists and turns you hadn’t planned on! Characters may quit their jobs or act unexpectedly, so remember the first draft of your manuscript will never be the same as the book that gets published.
When writing your memoirs, things will always pop in your head. One story may remind you of another story. A comment from a friend or family member will often start the next chapter. Alternatively, a comment could help you remember a story long since forgotten that could be pivotal to the memoirs.
Stop procrastination, sit down with a fresh screen or piece of paper and put something down. Once you start you find that you won’t stop. Map out what you want to say. Remember the reader and the journey you want them to go on. When writing your memoirs think about how much information do you want to share?