7 Easy Steps to Memoir Writing
Author: Mary Anne Benedetto
Reviewed By: Anne Holmes for the NABBW
If you have a desire to write your life story but don’t know where to begin, this book provides you with all the guidance you will need.
Mary Anne Benedetto knows each of us has at least one story stuck inside of us, and she provides dozens of memory-jogging suggestions to help us bring them forward so we can record them for future generations to read and enjoy.
Doubtless, you already know a few of these techniques. For example, listening to old songs on the radio takes us back to the exact time a song was popular. Looking at old photo albums can do the same thing, as can doing mundane tasks: I can never bake a cake from a box mix, for example, without remembering that the first time I made a box-mix cake the radio was on and the announcer was talking about daily life in Russia. He talked of bread lines, as I recall, because I remember thinking that Russian housewives probably didn’t have access to cake mix!
Benedetto offers a great list of memoir provoking ideas to assure that your writing process is easy and not at all overwhelming. And once the memoirs have been recorded, she suggests a number of ways you can keep thememories alive, either for your family’s eyes only or via traditional publishing.
As beneficial as the lists are, I also enjoyed the ten sample stories she offers. It’s always helpful to see what others have written – and a good way to jog the memory for your own ideas.
As the owner of A Writer’s Presence, LLC, Mary Anne Benedetto is a Certified Lifewriting Instructor, affiliated with The Soleil Lifestory Network. In addition to working on new writing projects, she teaches workshops to help people write their life and family stories, capture the essence of their Christian spiritual paths, and learn about navigating the publishing highways.
She thrives on speaking to community groups about the importance of preserving our stories to share with future generations, having been impacted by a trip to Hawaii where she toured Pearl Harbor and recalled that her father, Ralph Greene, had been stationed there in the Army on December 7, 1941.
At that moment she realized she really knew nothing about his experiences of that day–because she had never taken the time to ask. As a result, she is passionate about encouraging others to write their own stories and capture the life experiences of our loved ones before it is no longer possible.