DID YOU EVER WONDER what happens before a writer sits down to actually write a book? I’d be glad to tell you. It’s simple. We plan. Much like with any of life’s big projects – college, weddings and feasts, for instance – there is a lot of prep that goes down before the major event actually unfolds. I think the idea of planning for a book is a shock to many. So let’s resolve to start the new year off shock-free, shall we? [Read more…]
I HEAR A LOT OF EXCUSES. And I should. I am a writing coach and a memoir editor – not to mention a mother and wife, occupations that also come with fielding heaps of explanations – but it’s in those first two roles that I hear most about why people cannot do what they most want to do. And I’m sympathetic. Kind of. Sort of. Actually, not really all that much. I mean, I teach people how to write memoir, and while there are myriad reasons why writing is hard, there are very few good reasons not to write. [Read more…]
SINCE PUBLICATION OF THE MEMOIR PROJECT, my irreverent little book on how to write memoir, there has not been one day that I have not wanted to tweak it, adding a small thought or a phrase to what I published in its pages. And why not? Every day I learn another thing or two about this great art of writing what you know. Just today it was something new about how to write a first draft. [Read more…]
AS A MEMOIR COACH, I hear and read lots of stories and, as a result, I love to listen. I do it all day for storytellers as part of my job. I do it for my family, to the dog (of course) and to my students, whose tales need shaping, and whose work always begins with someone listening to their pitch. [Read more…]
READING IS A TEAM SPORT, one that takes a village of people in which we pass, hand-to-hand or by word of mouth, the books we love. I had two books literally pressed into my hand this week, both gifts from other readers. And then there are those I read about online that I feel I must press into yours.
Consider yourself part of the team. But remember: Do the same for the next person. Share this list, add what you’re reading. Be generous. Memoir deserves nothing less.
Here is what I’ve been reading about recently.
- Bustle’s 5 Feminist Messages from the Must-Read New Memoir “Love Warrior.”
- A lovely, smart friend of mine sat me down and read to me from this book the other night. It was divine. The whole experience.
- Bryan Cranston. His memoir. What more do I need to say?
- “When in French.” Lauren Collins’ new book. This is getting the very best reviews everywhere.
- Treyf. Know the word? Read the book.
What’s on your nightstand?
I got this fabulous photo from The Public Domain Review. Thank you.
HOW MANY PEOPLE do you think are in therapy because of you? Oh, I’m sorry. Did you just spit your tea right onto the computer screen? I know. I had a similar response when the question was posed to me, and in my case it was under non-writing circumstances. [Read more…]