Are you tinkering with the idea of writing your memoir? This quick quiz will help you decide if it’s time to start writing now:
- Do you wake up in the middle of the night with a stray memory? Do you consider getting up to write it down but don’t because you promise yourself you’ll remember it? Then in the morning do you remember that you remembered something important but have no earthly idea what it was? Would you like to capture those memories once and for all?
- Do you find yourself reminiscing about the past? Do you feel an urge to write down the most meaningful events in your life?
- Would you like to unravel a tangle of events going on in your life right now? Would it help to write things out in order to sort them out?
- Are you ever angry out of the blue at someone? Would you like to get it off your chest?
- When you’re driving down the street and hear an old song on the radio, does it stir up a fond memory of where you were and what you were doing when you heard it on a car radio long ago? Was it playing during your first date, or your first kiss, or your first… whatever…?
- Would you like closure on some of the things that have happened to you so that you can move on with your life?
- Might someone else benefit from reading how you’ve made it through life’s ups and downs? Are you an example of how to survive no matter what?
- Do you want to leave a legacy for your family? Would you like your great-great grandchildren to know who you are?
- Would you get a sense of satisfaction from writing out the highlights of your life story?
If you answered “yes” to just one of these questions, it’s time to start writing your memoir! In our writing workshops we find that people pen their memoirs for all kinds of reasons, especially those addressed by these questions. When you write your life story you’re not only doing it so that somebody else can read it, you’re doing it for yourself. As our friend Myra Lewis Williams, author of the memoirs Great Balls of Fire and The Spark that Survived, said, “Writing a memoir is like slapping your past onto a piece of paper, wrestling it to the ground, coming up in victory, and then giving it away. It’s no longer a battle in your life. You’ve won. It’s over. You can move on.”
Start your memoir today. Answer those lingering questions once and for all. Your memoir will be more than a recording of former events. It will provide you with an opportunity to move forward in life with renewed perspective and appreciation. Your past will guide you into the future in ways you have yet to discover – until you write your memoir.