|Dana Sitar from http://danasitar.com/|
Write Your Memoir. Right Now.
I never intended to be a writer. It was never my dream as a child, or in high school, or in college. I didn't study English or Creative Writing, or anything else that would lead me down this path. What I have always done is keep a journal. Since I was 11 years old, I have compulsively documented my life with no purpose or intention.
When I finally gave in to the drive that was always lurking deep inside to pursue writing professionally, I naturally turned to those journals for material. I started to turn old journal entries into blog posts and stories, and I started to keep my journal with me at all times to record everything that might possibly become a story.
I wasn't even trying to be autobiographical. I was just writing stories based on the greatest inspiration I could find: my life. But, when I decided to publish my first book, a collection of those stories, I realized that to call them fiction was not only inaccurate, it was confusing and didn't do the book justice. So, I call this book a memoir in short stories.
I felt a little silly at first telling people that my series was a memoir, because I'm only 25 years old. I've gotten over it, though, realizing through conversations with other writers that I've hit a nerve with the idea. Memoir doesn't have to be about digging through old journals and photo albums and piecing together memories of a life lived long ago. It doesn't have to include the wisdom you've gained with age, or your attempts to understand something that happened in your youth. It can just be your story. As it is. Right now.
|Finding a story.|
Dana Sitar is a freelance writer, editor, and blogger in the San Francisco Bay Area, and author of the ongoing memoir series This Artists' Life. She shares writing tips and anecdotes at her blog by.dana.sitar (http://danasitar.com).
Links in text:
I never intended to be [a writer]: http://danasitar.com
[my first book]: http://amzn.to/ShitShow
It can just be [your story]: http://danasitar.com/2011/11/28/writing-your-memoir-in-short-stories/