Wednesday, November 2, 2011

5 Areas to Address When Preparing to Write Your Memoir

Everyone has a story. Haven’t you heard me say that time and again? I truly believe it, and I believe that we should all tell our stories, in whatever genre we choose. But when it comes to people writing about their life experiences in the form of memoir or autobiography, many people – women especially – get stuck. They don’t get stuck because they doubt their writing ability or because they hit the brick wall of writer’s block. They get stuck because they don’t want to tell the gory details. You know, all of the intimate details of what they did, whom they allowed into their lives and why, results of the bad decisions they made, and what they lost in the process. 

I’ll admit, it can be scary to tell all of your stuff. But I’m here to let you off the hook. Ladies (and gentlemen), if you want to write an autobiography or memoir, you don't have to tell all of the details ... unless, of course, you want to. Readers want to know how you made it through the tough times and what you got out of it. They most likely don’t want to know to truly ugly details of your awful experiences. So rest easy knowing that you can leave the gory, embarrassing details to the celebrity tell-alls.

This is what I plan to share in my talk this Saturday at the Woman of Wow luncheon in Jonesboro, Georgia. I’ll share with the women that writing their life is about healing and freedom, for themselves and for their readers. It takes courage to tell your life story. But it also takes addressing these five areas to get to the place where you can effectively tell your story:

Get over the guilt: What do you think should happen to guilty people? They should be tried, convicted and sentenced, right? Well, that’s what you do to yourself when you wallow in the guilt of your past. Release the guilt.

Stop the shame: One expression of fear is shame. When you’re ashamed of yourself and your actions, you're afraid others will find out and judge you. Release that fear.

Fastforward forgiveness: Releasing others and yourself from the burden of unforgiveness lifts a huge weight off your shoulders and your mind. Change the way you view the situation and determine that you will no longer hold a grudge about it.

Cultivate confidence: When you are not certain or assured of who you are and what you know, you have difficulty telling your story. Find your point of confidence for today and stand firmly in it.

Learn the lesson: Life is all about lessons. This is what your readers really want; they want to know the lessons you learned from all the stuff you went through. So focuson the lesson when you write your life.

I’ll go into more of these steps during my talk. I hope you’ll join me this Saturday, November 5th from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. at the Lovejoy Community Center in Jonesboro, GA for a wonderful afternoon of fellowship. Click here to register

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