Memoir writing can be a great process if it is done properly. However, if you’ve never been taught how to do it properly then it can be an extremely difficult task that is draining and annoying to continue with. To prevent this from happening I’m going to show you my 4 top tips that I’ve discovered from different memoir writing lessons. By putting what I’m about to teach you into practice you should be started on the right path of learning how to write a great memoir with skill and relative ease.
Memoir Writing Tip 1 – You don’t have to share every minute detail
This is one of the “biggies” so pay attention! When writing your memoir it is totally unnecessary (and a complete waste of time) to add every single little detail from the day you were born. Although things like the color of your best friend’s sports shoes may seem important to you, unless the event or object has true significance to the story you’re telling, or it somehow highlights and important message or theme, leave it out. Focus on the big things in your life and build around them rather than making every little detail part of the story. It will send the “interest” factor of your writing through the roof and is one of the biggest keys to writing a great memoir.
Memoir Writing Tip 2 – You don’t have to start at the beginning of your life
There’s this strange misconception in the world of memoir writing that it is actually necessary to start your memoir by detailing either the details of your birth and very early life that have been passed to you by parents and family, or tell the first memory that you actually have. Everyone who’s going to be reading your memoir will expect it to start “at the start”, so you can surprise them and virtually force them to read on by giving them something that they were completely unprepared for. This is such a powerful technique that applying it alone to your writing will make
a huge difference. Many top writers use this technique when writing biographies for famous actors, musicians, politicians etc so there’s absolutely no reason why you can’t make use of this memoir writing lesson and improve your writing skills.
Memoir Writing Tip 3 – Decide who your target audience is
Marketers do this all the time – they decide whether their new breakfast cereal is aimed at young children or old age pensioners, or whether a new pair of shoes suits the high school or the university student target audience more. By picking a target audience they can then craft their products to suit the group and increase appeal, interest, desirability and ultimately sales. You need to do this as well. Is your memoir aimed at close friends and family only? If so, then you can use a more intimate writing style that more closely resembles a personal letter. However, if you
plan on writing for a wider audience then you need to deliver a more substantial writing style, master correct punctuation and provide a compelling storyline that will interest people who don’t know much about you.
Memoir Writing Tip 4 – Stop thinking, start writing
Procrastination is a terrible thing when it comes to writing. Perhaps the most important memoir writing lesson I can impart is to just start writing. Even if its just a draft or some scrawled down ideas, it’s better than sitting there thinking about writing. The more you think about writing, the less actual writing you’ll be doing which means that your memoir will take far longer to get finished. Whats worse, if the writing sessions are few and far between then the style and content of the memoir may become disjointed and it won’t be an enjoyable read. If you want to learn how to write a great memoir then you need to learn how to beat procrastination and just start writing.
In this article I’ve shared 4 of my top memoir writing lessons tips that will help you to write a great memoir. By learning not to share every minute detail, starting your writing in an interesting place, carefully deciding who your target audience are and simply starting writing you’ll be able to make that first memoir even more special. Now go grab a pen and paper and put the advice I’ve given you to use!