Writing the Memoir

I wanted to follow-up on Tiberghien’s chapter on Memoir by continuing the conversation.  I started a memoir this past spring I’m calling “Travels with Children,” but I’ve put it away because I didn’t feel like I had a good frame for it.  I’ve gotten some good ideas recently that I think will help me to organize and outline it better so I think I’ll go back to it once I finish “Sins with the Father.”

In the meantime, though, I found this interesting blog about Memoirs by Heather Summerhayes Cariou on the  International Women’s Writing Guild.  There’s so much good stuff in this essay so I’ll just share a couple of bits with you and then you’ll have to go read the rest for yourself . . .

” If you are worried about what others are going to think, you can’t write the story the way it needs to be written, and there’s no point in doing it. I wrote to find out what the story was, and to serve it. I wrote to heal myself, to make sense of the chaos I felt, to excavate the truth, not just as I remembered it but also as I discovered it to be in the process.”

“My goal was to reach as much truth as I could within myself, peeling through the layers of what I had previously thought was truth, finding deeper truths I didn’t know existed. This effort alone is tremendously worthwhile for you as a woman and a writer, even if in the end you have a work that you feel you can’t publish while others are still living.”

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