Every ordinary life story is extraordinary!

Every ordinary life story is extraordinary!

Why Young People Write Memoirs

The founder of Write My Memoirs was in his 60s when he figured out that people about his age needed a good website to anchor their memoir writing. In more recent years, we’ve noticed a trend—people much younger than their 60s also are joining and engaging with Write My Memoirs. It seemed odd at first. How much life is there to write about after only 20, 30 or even 40 years? The answer to that lies in the very heart of what a memoir is.

“Every event, and certainly every event worth writing about, will always remain tattooed on our neurons,” writes biographer Benjamin Moser in a New York Times article, “Should There Be a Minimum Age for Writing a Memoir?” Moser says it’s never too early to start writing about those events for the simple purpose of keeping a record. He calls it an “homage we pay ourselves.”

In the same article, young novelist and essayist Leslie Jamison makes a similar case for capturing the memory while it’s still fresh. “The narratives we tell about our own lives are constantly in flux,” she notes. “Our perspectives at each age are differently valuable. What age gains in remove it loses in immediacy: The younger version of a story gets told at closer proximity, with more fine-grain texture and less aerial perspective.”

In the article “Why Should You Write Your Memoir?” in Psychology Today, researcher Diana Raab reports her findings from interviews she conducted for her book, Writing for Bliss: A Seven-Step Plan for Telling Your Story and Transforming Your Life. Younger people told her pretty much the same thing we hear from older memoir authors: they felt they had a story to share and wanted to tell it in their own voice, from their own perspective. “Additional reasons to write a memoir include preserving a family’s legacy, learning more about one’s ancestors, a search for personal identity, gaining insight into the past or healing from a traumatic experience,” Raab adds.

Our experience at Write My Memoirs is that our older authors look back on their entire lives and choose stories they consider worthy of inclusion in their memoir. The driving factor is the writing—a desire to write about their life. With younger people, the story itself is what drives the idea. Something distinctive, good or bad, happens to them and they want to make sure the story gets told. It’s a subtle difference, but we notice that age does influence how you present your memoir.

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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!