Every ordinary life story is extraordinary!

Every ordinary life story is extraordinary!

Listen to Yourself, Not the Experts’ Advice

Reviewing some of the advice on Google about how to write a memoir, I’m struck by how much of it is exactly opposite to the advice we offer to Write My Memoirs members. If you’re trying to sell your memoir and hoping for a six-figure movie deal based on your life, then a lot of the conventional wisdom holds. You should tell compelling anecdotes, grab the reader right from the beginning with a great first line and show how much personal growth you’ve experienced. But if you’re doing what we do here—writing for your friends and family—all of that advice goes out the window. And there’s a tremendous freedom in knowing that you can just write however you want to write.

When the intended readers already love you, the blank screen isn’t so intimidating. You don’t have to be afraid to start that first sentence. You don’t have to worry that your writing isn’t good enough or you’ll do something “wrong.” Your account of your life, however you choose to explain it, will be cherished by the readers, because they know you personally. You really can’t go wrong.

So disregard any online “help” telling you that a chronological life story isn’t intriguing enough. Forget about crafting “setups” for plot lines that build until they reach a resolution, especially a “shocking” resolution. Don’t fret over whether your work will be considered a “memoir” or an “autobiography.” Who cares? When you hand out your book at church, the VFW hall, your family reunion or your community book fair, those people will appreciate every word. You’re a legend in their minds, and now they’ll have all of the details of how you turned out that way.

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Then just set up a chapter and start writing your memoir. Don’t worry about rules. There are no rules to writing your memoir; there are only trends. These trends are based on techniques and features identified in current top-selling memoirs. At best, they’re the flavor of the month. If you’re capturing your life in print for your family, for your own gratification or to inspire readers, rather than aiming to set off Hollywood screenplay bidding wars, these trends don’t even apply to you. You’ll write the memoir that suits you best, and it will be timeless, not trend-driven.There are no rules, but there are four steps:

1. Theme/framework
2. Writing
3. Editing/polishing
4. Self-publishing

You’ve researched this, too, and you’ve been shocked at the price for getting help with any one of those steps, much less all four. That’s because most memoir sites promise to commercialize your work. They’ll follow a formula based on current memoir trends, because they want to convince you that they can turn your memoir into a best-seller. These sites overwhelm you with unnecessary information not to help you, the memoir author, but to address Search Engine Optimization (SEO) algorithms so they can sell more.

That’s not what we do at Write My Memoirs. Our small community of coaches, writers and editors are every bit as skilled as any you’ll find, and we charge appropriately for their expertise and the time they’ll spend helping you craft a compelling, enjoyable read. But you won’t pay an upcharge for other websites’ commercialization, the marketing that follows, and the pages of intimidating “advice.” You can sell your book if you like—we have ISBNs available for you—but our organic process of capturing your story takes a noncommercial path.

If you want help with any or all of the four steps above, choose from our services or save money by selecting one of our packages. If you’d like to talk about what’s right for you, schedule a call. One year from now, you can be holding your published memoir in your hand. And at that point, it will be a big deal!