In every one of my classes for writers, there are always a few writers who are doing deep healing work and, along the way, discover that they feel called to write a memoir. However, immediately after this, self-doubt kicks in and the writer questions if they really should be spending their time trying to write a memoir, or if their time would be better spent on some other writing project.
I’ve also worked with many people who have tried to write their memoir, but never finished it, or could never quite get the motivation to start it. This is extremely common for writers who are embarking on writing a first memoir. The problem is that every writer who goes through it tends to feel very isolated and has no idea their struggle is not just about them, but is actually a relatively natural part of the process for first-time memoir writers.
Usually, first-time memoir writers are dealing with a lot of fear around the process. They’re afraid that:
They’ll get too overwhelmed by organizing all the pieces
Their self-doubt will take over and they’ll never finish
They don’t know what they’re doing and they’ll do a bad job of it
Other people will read it and judge them
However, it’s important that writers who feel called to write their memoir NOT let these common fears stop them. In fact, there is one definite way you can know whether or not you should write your memoir and it’s kind of surprising. (I’ll give you one hint: this tends to happen to writers who are writing fiction as a way to distract themselves from writing their memoir.)
I talk more about this in the video below:
I’m teaching a new class this month called Memoir Writing for Everyone and it starts June 14. Over the next few days, I’ll be releasing a couple more videos that will shed more light on the memoir-writing process: what to expect and how you can know if this is something you need to do.
Reading memoir and working with writers who are writing memoir is one of my favorite things ever, so I’m super excited for this new class. I’ll see you soon with the next video in the series!