Every ordinary life story is extraordinary!

Every ordinary life story is extraordinary!

Start Your Autobiography with a Powerful First Line

Come up with a great opening line for your memoirs in order to keep readers interested in continuing to read.

“I was born in [name your year] in [name your town].??? Sure, you can begin your autobiography with that sentence. But, really, why would you? Be creative, and make the first line of your memoirs drive the reader to want to learn more about you.

How? You can throw a little intrigue into your first sentence—make it mysterious in some way. An example comes from singer Janis Ian’s 2009 work, Society’s Child: My Autobiography, which reads, “I was born into the crack that split America.??? A sentence like that leads the reader to wonder what it means exactly and, thus, encourages further reading. Or, you can make a statement that, while deceivingly simple, also startles: “I was born in a house my father built??? is the first sentence of Richard Nixon’s memoirs. A third example, a multiple-sentence lead written by artist Salvador Dali, speaks for itself in giving the reader a good idea of the author’s personality: “At the age of six I wanted to be a cook. At seven I wanted to be Napoleon. And my ambition has been growing steadily ever since.???

You might want to wait until you have several chapters of your memoirs written before you tackle your opening line. Or, start from the beginning and write your first line, but keep an open mind that you might want to change it as you get a feel for your own story and style of writing.

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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!