The Life Library

Memoir and Personal Essay

Memoir is a beautiful challenging dive into self and story structure. Here are a few things I’ve learned from spending 4 years writing a memoir that didn’t work and from coaching many writers on their stories.

Explore what your main character or reader wants
How to Revise: Part Two
How to Revise: Part One
Hearing One Thing/Saying Another
When You’re Struggling to Find Your Voice
Structure and Chronology Issues in Memoir/Self-Help Hybrid
The Ladder of Abstraction
Make a List of Excuses for Your Character or Project
What is a Draft and Why you Need Beta Readers
Writing About and Writing To a Reader
What if Being Original Didn’t Matter and Never Did?
Using a Poem to Expand a Project or Write a New Piece
Writing Meditation: Launch A Story
Creating a Word Trap
5 Modes: Practicing Dialogue
5 Modes: Practicing Action
5 Modes: Practicing State of Mind
5 Modes: Practicing Description
The Art of Leaving
The Essential Truth in Memoir and Personal Essay
Excuses, Excuses
How to Begin a Scene