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A Memoir is the younger sibling of an autobiography. While the autobiography talks about a person’s details from birth to death, a memoir focuses on only certain parts. Memoir writing is a brief narrative on a certain point of the author from their perspective.
Going back to the history of memoir, St. Augustine of Hippo wrote the confessions of St. Augustine in A.D 357. Although confessions could have been taken as an example of autobiography, this writing seemed different.
This did not focus on the entire life, achievements and learning but on the sin from the narrator’s point of view, which gave birth to memoirs.
And just like that, writing a memoir originated, they gave birth to subcategories like confessional memoirs, celebrity memoirs, transformation memoirs, personal memoir and travel memories.
Let us now break down the process of writing a memoir. The guide will cover everything you need to know about memoirs in one place.
To those who do not know what memoir writing is for them it might seem similar to autobiography, but it is not. Memoir is a reflection of a particular memory, while autobiography is facts about the life. Both of them are written in first person as the person is telling the story by themselves.
Building a relationship with the audience and provoking some emotion is important for a memoir. At the same time, for an autobiography stating simplest life facts can make it meaningful for the readers.
These valuable lessons can guide someone else, and the audience who resonates with them can be more enlightened.
Memoirs are one of the best ways of sharing experiences and life lessons and showcase the power of storytelling. One can share bold messages by intriguing the readers or they follow the narration form of writing. It can easily capture the audience’s attention.
Beginners trying out their hands-on memoir writing may have a tough time selecting a good topic. To help you out, let us give you a slight hint on how to pick up topics for a memoir.
Our brain can process, experience and identify emotions which can be sparked while reading memoirs. Memories hardly contain any educational value. Rather they have high educational and sentimental value about a person’s life, struggles, memories, and acts which many people can find similar.
Everyone has thousands of experiences over their lifetime, and if you think you don’t, then take some time and think it over and you will have your memoir topic in no time.
Once you have your idea, it is time to sit down and get to the writing part. Now this is a process of trial and error, and you won’t achieve perfection in one shot.
But here are some tips for writing a memoir that will help you out in saving your efforts:
The above tips were more general tips on how to write an engaging plot, but here are some more tips on how to write a memoir and make it vivid and engaging for the readers:
Now that you know how to write it, let’s discuss different kinds of approaches which one can adopt for memoir writing:
One of the most followed and simplest ways to start and end your memoir is by following the chronological order. In this, the writers arrange the events in the order this has happened.
Beginners should resort to this as it is easy for them to writer and for the readers to understand the sequence of the events.
If you cannot pick a topic for your memoir, then think of other genres where you can add your strong points. It can be crime, horror, overcoming adversity, the impact of money etc.
Once you have the theme on your mind, you can easily fragment a story which lives up to it.
If you have read “Eat, Pray, Love” then you know how the ending starts with passion, and then the writer completely breaks off from it and leads onto the story. Sometimes the best way to write memoir can be by using past and present narratives.
Although the writers may find it tough, if done correctly it will create timeless pieces with flashbacks and flash-forwards which is interesting to read.
You can base your entire memoir on overcoming the inner conflict while facing the issue. These are mostly used for abuse and darker content, but anyone who is struggling to overcome bad habits and achieve their goals despite it seeming impossible can follow this style.
Being honest in a memoir is one of the best ways of captivating audiences with the truth. Since one follows an informal tone in a memoir and has to tell their own story, most people do not want to seem dishonest and want to state every detail with precision.
While narrating the story, simple loopholes like “I don’t remember the exact scene or time” can be disappointing. Under such cases, when honesty does not seem like an easy option, one takes the opportunity of fragmenting or playing around with the truth. But does it lead to ethical concerns?
Like any other form of writing, memoir writing allows friction, too. Even real-life commentaries have twists and turns to keep the readers or viewers on hook. Creativity should be limitless, and there is no issue with using objective truth. Often the topics are so sensitive or controversial that it leaves no option for the writer but to leave the truth behind. Under such cases, a different realm must be taken, names must be changed, and certain information must be disclosed out of respect.
Memoirs are the art of connecting with the readers by telling personal stories. However, it is not wrong to hide the truth ethically, as the story is not diverted. When dealing with brutal and controversial topics, then think of ways by which you can create a good draft and share your opinion on the topic which does not offend others. Please don’t go into the story with the emotion of revenge or empathy rather keep it simple yet knowledgeable and let the audience crave out its own meaning.
Always think of the areas you want to cover and which will be best if left untouched.
Even though memoirs are easier to write than autobiographies and other writing tasks, they call for revisions. There are still things left to revise. Apart from obvious English matters, flow of sentences, punctuation, grammar, and tense, one also needs to review the information, dates mentioned, name of real identities and flow of the entire story. Revision is a must. We bet you need to make changes every time you revise. If you don’t, that is when you know your work is supreme.
Lets us break down some tips on how to revise and self-edit your paper wisely. Suggest seeking feedback from trusted writers and readers or hiring a professional editor to improve the quality of your memoir.
No work is complete without proofreading and editing if you are into writing. Memoir writing does involve different strategies, but the proofreading and editing methods do not differ by a vast degree. Here is how you can edit and proofread your memoir to take it to the next level:
Awareness is the key and being aware of editing is the foundation of good writing. Many omit editing because it is too much work and hassle, but the result is perfection leading to success. Stay committed to the process and do not give up. Memoir writing seems fun since it is about oneself, but certain elements should be added here and there to make it interesting for the readers.
Memoir writing is writing your own story, which is why often it might seem boring. But how beautifully the writer can intertwine the plots and hit the emotional resonance of the readers is what sets it apart.
It may or may not be writing to inspire others, but it is always focused on reflecting and exploring particular emotions. This is a tough job because you’re repressing your ideas, and you want it to be interesting to resonate with the readers. Hopefully, through our guide, you will know how to write a catchy, attractive memoir that evokes emotions in the readers.
Include personal stories that are inspiring and heart-touching. Such anecdotes can help those who are going through similar experiences. And if you do not want to share your dark memories, then make it fun and be the reason for someone’s laughter.
Memoir writing can prove to be a tedious task if you do not follow the guidelines accurately. Moreover, if you are new to memoir writing, you might wonder, “How to write a memoir?” However, there is no reason to panic as MyAssignmenthelp.com is here to solve your problems.
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To convert your memories into a memoir, think of particular influential, emotional or dramatic part of your life. Focus on key events, lessons learned and other areas to create the theme for your work.
A memoir works best when there are personal elements involved. But that does not restrict the writer’s right to hide real people’s identities to protect their privacy. You can always change the names of people, areas, schools and more to keep your identity hidden.
If you are facing writer’s block while writing your memoir, then think of something else to do. Take a break and go outside for fresh air. You can also read similar works to find a direction for your paper. One can also try free writing, where the writer has no boundaries and jots down anything and everything that comes to their mind.
Try to talk about a theme or topic to make your memoir more engaging for readers. Be honest and share lessons learnt. You can also use vivid imagery and add fictional characters to add emotions in the paper to move your readers.
The decision to either self-publish or seek a traditional publisher is optional. As per statistics, 97% of the writers self-publish while the other 1 % get a publisher. The remaining 2% spends a lot of time on reaching any conclusion.