Tag Archives: memoir

What You Really Need to Know About Memoir Writing

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I’ve always thought that if I were to ever write a memoir, it’d be the most boring 80,000 words in the history of publishing (or at least a close second to this). My life has, thus far, been fun, entertaining and interesting to me, but how would that translate into an interesting story? Then I started reading the 5-Minute Memoir. Read more

Focus On: The Memoir Essay

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If you’re interested in sharing your personal experiences through writing, consider learning more about the memoir essay. The following excerpt is taken from Crafting The Personal Essay by Dinty W. Moore. You’ll … Read more

Realistic Expectations For Writing a Memoir

Writing Life Stories

Learn what a memoir is and how to create memories with today’s tip of the day taken from Writing Life Stories by Bill Roorbach, with Kristen Keckler. What is a memoir? Memoir … Read more

10 Ways to Tell if Your Story Should be a Memoir or a Novel

Should your story be fictionalized or be a true telling of your life? You have to decide. Here are 10 factors to consider. Read more

5-Minute Memoir: Hidden in Plain Sight

5-Minute Memoir is exactly what it sounds like—a personal essay on some facet of the writing life, be it a narrative or a reflection, pensive, touching or hilarious. Enjoy this installment from Kathleen Cleberg. Read more

5-Minute Memoir: The Beauty of Bones

5-Minute Memoir is exactly what it sounds like—a personal essay on some facet of the writing life, be it a narrative or a reflection, pensive, touching or hilarious. Enjoy this installment from N.M. Kleby. Read more

5-Minute Memoir: The Art of Falling Without Hitting the Ground

5-Minute Memoir is exactly what it sounds like—a personal essay on some facet of the writing life, be it a narrative or a reflection, pensive, touching or hilarious. Enjoy this installment from Robert B Robeson. Read more

Memoir Spotlight: Jeannette Walls

Jeannette Walls is the author of The Glass Castle, a memoir with more than 3 million copies in print, and Half Broke Horses, a bestselling true-life novel based on her grandmother. She … Read more

Historical Fiction Spotlight: Paula McLain

Paula McLain’s latest book is the bestselling The Paris Wife, a fictional account of Ernest Hemingway’s first marriage and upstart years in 1920s Paris, told from the point of view of his … Read more

Writer’s Digest Annual Competition

For 80 years, the Annual Writer’s Digest Competition has rewarded writers just like you for their finest work. We continue the tradition by giving away more than $30,000 in cash and prizes! Win a trip to the Writer’s Digest Conference in New York City ! Read more

3 Ways to Know When to End Your Chapters

At some point in writing your novel, you have to start thinking about “chaptering,” the process of deciding exactly when and where your chapter breaks will go. Here are three simple, essential techniques that can help you make effective chapter pauses.

by Aaron Elkins
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How to Organize and Develop Ideas for Your Novel

With so many great ideas, how do you organize them into some sort of coherent outline that will guide your writing? Here’s how.

by Laura Whitcomb
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Finding Your Memoir’s Voice

Literary agent Paula Balzer discussed finding your voice in this excerpt from her book WRITING & SELLING YOUR MEMOIR. Read more

How to Improve Your Writing Style in 10 Minutes or Fewer

Everyone can benefit from the occasional reminder of the principles of strong writing. Below are 10 tips and exercises designed to make your writing more clear and concise. Think of them as a 10-minute refresher course.

by Brandon Royal
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What “Based on a True Story” Means

Years have passed since Frey was fried, but as the poster boy for stretching the truth in the genre, his name is still the one that comes up during such discussions. But did he (and counteless other writers) do anything wrong and should memoirists be allowed some factual flexibility?

by Jenny Rough
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The Key Elements of Writing a Good Memoir

Build your story around this foolproof framework to keep your memoir afloat.

by Adair Lara

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How to “Up the Stakes” for Your Main Character

Don’t be afraid to make things hard on your characters. You should always come up with several different problems to choose from. Here are 3 ways to do that.

by Victoria Lynn Schmidt
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How to Write Intriguing Male and Female Characters

Understanding gender differences can improve your writing in any genre. Here’s how.

by Leigh Anne Jasheway

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Quick Tip: How to Develop Your Characters

Here are 4 quick exercises to make sure your characters speak to readers (and agents).
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Best Writing Advice in 10 Words or Fewer

Several Writer’s Digest contributors share their best advice in 10 words or fewer.
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The Best and Worst of Writing Advice

When you gather a panel of writers to discuss the best and worst writing advice they’ve ever received, the conversation promises to be as colorful as it is informative—and this one with spy novelist Alex Dryden,  mystery novelist Lisa Gardner, author Alex Kava, and debut author Daniel Palmer, did not disappoint.

by Jessica Strawser, reporting from ThrillerFest 2010 (New York City)

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5 Steps to a Great Female Protagonist

According to bestselling authors JT Ellison, Alex Kava and Erica Spindler, there are 5 key ways to make your heroine shine. Here they are.

by Jessica Strawser, reporting from ThrillerFest 2010 (New York City)
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Motivate Your Characters Like a Pro

In his session “The Psychology of Character Motivation,” Edgar-nominated author D.P. Lyle, MD, shared this invaluable exercise for developing your characters’ motivations as your story unfolds.

by Jessica Strawser, reporting from ThrillerFest 2010 (New York City)
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How to Give Your Character the Perfect Name

What you call your characters could influence your readers’ perceptions of them. Here are some factors to consider in finding the perfect match.

by Devyani Borade
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From Idea to Page in 4 Simple Steps

Nothing is more exciting than the promise of a story in your head, but in order to get it on the page you need to figure out exactly what you need to do to make it work. Here are 4 steps to help you build the framework of your story.

by N.M. Kelby
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