Memoir Writing

Do you dream about sharing your experiences? Memoir writing can be satisfying, when you know how. You can write a memoir yourself, or hire a ghostwriter to do the memoir writing for you. Read more below or contact me to learn more.

Here are some general guidelines for how to write a memoir. Once you start writing, you can also look at 12 tips for writing memoirs.

What Is a Memoir?

First of all, what is a memoir? A memoir is a story about your life, tracing your experiences, hopes, failures, success and triumphs. It’s also a way to share your wisdom and leave a legacy.

Some famous memoirs are Memoirs of a Geisha, which was written by a ghostwriter, and Angela’s Ashes, the famous Frank McCourt memoir about growing up in Ireland.

The Memoirs of a Geisha movie was a blockbuster, while the movie version of the McCourt memoir also won many awards.

How to Start a Memoir

How do you condense decades of your life into a comprehensive, engaging and compelling narrative? One way to start a memoir is to tell your story to a ghostwriter. The ghostwriter digitally records you talking, transcribes the material, and then edits and revises it into a memoir.

You can start a memoir by creating a timeline. You do this by creating a timeline of the period you want to write about, and then listing the key events and emotional experiences that happened at each point. This is explained further in how to write a memoir.

Another way to start a memoir is to simply start journaling your life experiences, including your memories, thoughts and feelings. It doesn’t matter if you don’t know what to say, worry about saying it right or simply can’t remember the details. Just get started.

Once you have something down, you can start picking and choosing which experiences you want to focus on in the narrative. Then write more about that. After a while, you can organize the material and shape it into chapters.

You can then hire a ghostwriter or editor to read your journal, organize the material and edit it into a compelling memoir.

If you are unsure, you can start a short memoir. Short memoirs allow individuals to tell their stories without committing time and resources to an extensive autobiography.

How to Structure a Memoir

One formula I use to structure a memoir is something called The Hero’s Journey.” This is a classic structure of an individual’s road to triumph.

When I work with my clients, I don’t actually talk about the Hero’s Journey. It simply gives me a guide for crafting and shaping a memoir. Sometimes it is hard to see your own hero’s journey, but a professional ghostwriter knows how to recognize and tell your life story, so it can inspire and help others.

Timelines will also help you create a structure, as explained in how to write a memoir. For more pointers, you can look at 12 tips for memoir writing.

If you need help telling your life story in a memoir, or just have general writing questions, contact us for a consultation.

Related Resources

Conveying the Author’s Voice

The Hero’s Journey — Memoir Structure

12 Tips on Memoir Writing

Return to the top of the Memoir Writing page

Return to the home page