Memoir Writing 101: How to Reclaim Your Memories

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Our lives are so full of memories that it can be daunting to decide where to begin.Many people sit down to write their autobiography and find themselves staring at a blank page or screen not knowing what to write. Below are some ways to kick start your memory into action so that you can get your autobiography written.

Photo albums are an excellent place to rediscover old memories for your autobiography. Leaf through old photo albums. Pull out all your old albums and old photographs and make a day of pouring over them and jotting down brief notes as the memories resurface. You can add to these brief notes later. 

Interview those family members who can remember when you were born and growing up. Ask them questions about what you were like and ask them to provide specific details surrounding funny stories, etc.

Pull out your old yearbooks. Yearbooks are another valuable tool in uncovering lost memories for your memoirs or autobiography. Read through all the autographs of the people who signed your book. These quick margin jottings often will spark more than one memory for you.

Read your diaries or old date books for hidden memories. Both diaries and date books contain a goldmine of memories. You will find memories in these books that will astound you.

Next, dig up your old address book. These are full of rich memories of old acquaintances and business associates.

Another great way to find those hidden memories is by making lists. List all of the places you have ever worked. List the schools you attended. List the extracurricular activities you participated in. List the awards and prizes you won or wished you had won.

Keep your memories organized on a timeline chart. Also stay organized by making folders for your memories. You can have a folder for childhood, school, work etc.

Persevere! Keep making lists, interviewing, pouring over albums, and talking to everyone! Writing your memoirs will be one of the most rewarding tasks you have ever completed!

Be sure to check out for more great tips on journaling and memoir writing.


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