Every ordinary life story is extraordinary!

Every ordinary life story is extraordinary!

Take a Scholarly Approach to Memoir Writing

Two associations hold conventions for in-depth discussion of topics relevant to autobiography and biography.
Take a Scholarly Approach to Memoir Writing
Most of our members here on WriteMyMemoirs are not professional writers and would not consider themselves serious students of writing or autobiography. But perhaps some of you do fall into the category of “writing scholar.” If you’d love learning more about biography and autobiography, I recommend looking into the International Auto/Biography Association (IABA), which meets annually for a scholarly convention that each year explores a different aspect of crafting a life story and is held in a selected fabulous global city.
On that website, you may notice an invitation to submit an abstract if you’re interested in serving on a panel at the annual convention of a different group, the Northeast Modern Language Association (NeMLA). According to NeMLA, this panel “will address the narrative and socio-political relationships between contemporary memoir and self-help. Topics may include, but are not limited to: narrative analyses of popular self-help texts; the co-evolution of memoir and self-help; how the narrative of self-help embeds itself in memoir; revisiting trauma in a public forum.”
The NeMLA convention takes place March 21-24, 2013, but the deadline to submit an abstract is coming up on September 30. It would be great to have a WriteMyMemoirs member serve on the panel or just attend this event and report back to us. In any case, on the next blog let’s discuss the memoir/self-help connection. If NeMLA is creating an entire panel presentation on the topic, there must be a lot to talk about!

Most of our members here on WriteMyMemoirs are neither professional writers nor would consider themselves serious students of writing or autobiography. But perhaps some of you do fall into the category of “writing scholar.” If you’d love to learn more about biography and autobiography, I recommend looking into the International Auto/Biography Association (IABA), which meets annually for a scholarly convention that each year explores a different aspect of crafting a life story and is held in a selected fabulous global city.

On that website, you may notice an invitation to submit an abstract if you’re interested in serving on a panel at the annual convention of a different group, the Northeast Modern Language Association (NeMLA). The topic is: Together after Oprah: Theorizing Contemporary Memoir via Self-Help Discourse. According to NeMLA, this panel “will address the narrative and socio-political relationships between contemporary memoir and self-help. Topics may include, but are not limited to: narrative analyses of popular self-help texts; the co-evolution of memoir and self-help; how the narrative of self-help embeds itself in memoir; revisiting trauma in a public forum.”

The NeMLA convention takes place March 21-24, 2013, but the deadline to submit an abstract is coming up on September 30. It would be great to have a WriteMyMemoirs member serve on the panel or just attend this event and report back to us. In any case, on the next blog let’s discuss the memoir/self-help connection. If NeMLA is creating an entire panel presentation on the topic, there must be a lot to talk about!

Like this article?

Login

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!