Tuesday, June 14, 2011

The Memoir Project

Would you like to write a memoir? A memoir is probably the single greatest portal to self-examination. A recent study revealed that the Number 1 thing that baby boomers want to do in retirement is write a book....about themselves. The Memoir Project: A Thoroughly Non-Standardized Text for Writing & Life, by Marion Roach Smith, provides original, humorous and effective methods to make the dream of writing your story a reality. The author encourages aspiring memoirists to "write on" with intent and purpose.

About The Author
Marion Roach Smith has written four books and she's been teaching a sold-out memoir writing class for 13 years.  She is the co-founder of The Sister Project.

You Are Not The Story
What??? I always thought a memoir would be about me...me...me.  Mrs. Smith advises the writer to ask the following question, "What is this about?"  The writer must decide on a theme for the story and then use personal experiences to illustrate the theme. The theme might be "revenge", "betrayal" or "mercy" and certain personal experiences would illustrate that theme. By the way, Mrs. Smith advices that only one of these words should ever apply to the story's intent, and that's "mercy".

Three Basic Guideline
In a memoir, there are three basic guidelines;
(1.) Writing memoir is about telling the truth.
(2.) Every page must drive one single story forward.
(3.) Just because something happens, doesn't make it interesting.
This book was a real pleasure to read because it offers very practical information in a light-hearted and humorous manner. The book is for people who are tired of doing writing exercises, taking classes and reading books about writing. This book provides solid tactics for writers who are ready to WRITE.  Mrs. Smith suggests that a writer should write five pages a day...five days a week. The job of writing a memoir is real WORK and should not be taken lightly.  I highly recommend this book to anyone who is ready to "write on".

Connected On LinkedIn
I connected with Mrs. Smith in the "Women's Memoirs Group" at LinkedIn. This book was just published last week so I downloaded the sample on my Kindle and decided that this was a book that I MUST read.

My Personal Memoir Project
On October 16, 1992, I was in a head-on collision with a drunk driver. I have wanted to write about my journey of recovery and forgiveness for many years. I have now set a goal that I will write this memoir and it will be ready for publication by October, 2012...the 20-year anniversary of the event.  I will be using "The Memoir Project" as a resource to guide me along the path of self-discovery and self-examination.

Have you thought about writing a memoir? I would love for you to share your thoughts in the Comments Section below.
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