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Memoir Writing & Memoir Examples

Memoir writing takes guts. It’s revealing and personal – sometimes even painful to put on the page. Here you’ll find guidelines and memoir examples to ensure your story is something others will want to read. Learn how to craft it and how to get it sold. For more resources, click How to Write a Memoir.

5 New Year’s Resolutions for Writers

A new year, a new writerly you. New Year’s Day is a time for reflecting on the past year while thinking about the goals, wishes, and hopes for the new year ahead. … Read more

Meet the Real Andre Dubus III

He did not set out to follow in his famous father’s footsteps, nor is he as dark and brooding as his own House of Sand and Fog. And those are just the first of many things that will surprise you about the bestseller. Read more

How to Resurrect a Stalled Manuscript

Is your manuscript stuck? Take a break from completing your fiction project and diagnose it. Here’s how to take your manuscript into its next phase: completion. Read more

Crafting Novels & Short Stories Exclusive

Download a free PDF with interviews with novelists like Stephen King, Kurt Vonnegut, Anne Tyler, Margaret Atwood, and more. Find out more ways to make your fiction stand out with Crafting Novels … Read more

3 Tips for Consistent Tone

If you find yourself having a difficult time sustaining one tone over a long work, try these three tricks. Read more

Write-A-Thon Poster

Download a 26-day countdown poster with energy boosting ideas to fuel your marathon and track your accomplishments from Day 1 to Day 26. Write-A-Thon Poster 8.5×11 Write-A-Thon Poster 11×17       … Read more

Write-A-Thon Interview

Q&A with Rochelle Melander, author of Write-A-Thon Need a speaker? Contact Rochelle to speak by phone with your critique group, NaNoWriMo region, or book group: rochelle@writenowcoach.com How many books have you written … Read more

Write-A-Thon Excerpt

Need a speaker? Contact Rochelle to speak by phone with your critique group, NaNoWriMo region, or book group: rochelle@writenowcoach.com Avoid Overwhelm From Write-A-Thon by Rochelle Melander Being a poet is one of … Read more

Write-A-Thon

  Write-A-Thon: Write Your Book in 26 Days (and Life to Tell About it) by Rochelle Melander Writer’s Digest Books, 2011 ISBN-13: 978-1-59963-391-6 ISBN-10: 1-59963-391-4 $16.99 paperback, 240 pages Buy the book! … Read more

How to Be an Online Critique Geek

Can a virtual critique group really be as good as meeting face to face? If you make the most of the format, it could be even better. Here’s how. 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

When Is Lying in Memoir Acceptable? 3 Key Issues

Today’s guest post is from Tracy Seeley, author of My Ruby Slippers. Visit her site, or find out more about her book. – They crop up like weeds in the literary garden, … 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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Twist Ending Tips From Harlan Coben

Award-winning writing, quick-witted characters and the kind of suspense every reader craves—his books may be classified under mystery or thriller, but Harlan Coben seems to have it all. And he’s willing to share his secrets.

by Jessica Strawser
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7 Things I’ve Learned So Far, by Rachel Friedman

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This is a recurring column I’m calling “7 Things I’ve Learned So Far,” where writers at any stage of their career can talk about seven things they’ve learned along their writing journey that they wish they knew at the beginning. This installment is from writer Rachel Friedman.

Rachel Friedman is the author of The Good Girl’s Guide to Getting Lost: A Memoir of Three Continents, Two Friends, and One Unexpected Adventure (Bantam; 2011). She teaches literature at John Jay College of Criminal Justice. Read more

Back to Basics: Writing & Publishing Memoir

It can be very difficult to sell a memoir when you’re not famous. Without a celebrity’s fan base, or a loyal and captive audience, then you need to write like a master, … Read more

7 Things I’ve Learned So Far, by Glen Retief

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This is a recurring column I’m calling “7 Things I’ve Learned So Far,” where writers at any stage of their career can talk about seven things they’ve learned along their writing journey that they wish they knew at the beginning. This installment is from writer Glen Retief.

Glen Retief is the author of The Jack Bank, a memoir focusing on his experiences of violent whites-only hazing rituals under apartheid. Kirkus Reviews called it “Visceral and emotionally complex—an impressive first book.”. Read more

How I Found My Agent: Susan Pohlman

Pohlman

“How I Got My Agent” is a recurring feature on the GLA blog. Some tales are of long roads and many setbacks, while others are of good luck and quick signings. If you have a literary agent and would be interested in writing a short guest column for this GLA blog, e-mail me at literaryagent@fwmedia.com and we’ll talk specifics.

Susan Pohlman is author of the travel memoir Halfway to Each Other: How a Year In Italy Brought Our Family Home, winner of the relationships category in the 2010 Next Generation Indie Book Awards. Good Housekeeping called the book “a remarkable story.” Susan is also the writer of three award-winning short films, and a magazine freelancer. Read more

How to Craft Compelling Characters

To make characters seem real, you need to tap into what drives them. Use this foolproof method to bring the emotion of your story to life.

by David Corbett
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How I Got My Agent: Stacy Pershall

Pershall

“How I Got My Agent” is a recurring feature on the GLA blog. Some tales are of long roads and many setbacks, while others are of good luck and quick signings. If you have a literary agent and would be interested in writing a short guest column for this GLA blog, e-mail me at literaryagent@fwmedia.com and we’ll talk specifics.

Stacy Pershall, holds a MFA degree in electronic art from the University of Cincinnati. Her memoir, Loud in the House of Myself: Memoir of a Strange Girl (2011; Norton) was chosen for the Barnes and Noble spring 2011 Discover Great New Writers program. Booklist called the memoir an “electrifying account … one whirlwind ride.” Read more

Creating Memoir That’s Bigger Than Me, Me, Me

Today’s guest post is from Tracy Seeley, author of My Ruby Slippers. Visit her site, or find out more about her book. – Memoir tells stories from our own lives. It says, … Read more

The Best Education for Writing Memoir

Today’s post is from regular guest and favorite, Darrelyn Saloom. Follow her on Twitter, or read her previous guest posts. Pictured above: Darrelyn’s mother in 1969 as she works her way to … Read more

Excellent Online Learning Opportunities (Free + Paid)

There are so many interesting opportunities coming up for online education that I wanted to take a moment to round them up! FREE: The Evolution of Self-Publishing webcast, brought to you by … Read more

Book Marketing For 21st-Century Authors

napoli

Almost three years after the deal got made with Crown Publishing Group, my travel memoir about my time helping to start a radio station in the Himalayan Kingdom of Bhutan has hit the shelves. Hooray! But there’s little time to celebrate, and there hasn’t been much downtime for months—even though the actual book was complete well over a year ago.

Guest column by Lisa Napoli, author of the memoir, Radio Shangri-La: What I Learned in Bhutan, the Happiest Kingdom on Earth (Feb. 2011, Crown). Publishers Weekly said of the book: “Napoli’s adventures … will delight readers.” Read more

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