Writing & Selling Your Memoir: How to Craft Your Life Story So That Somebody Else Will Actually Want to Read It

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Overview

There's more to writing a memoir than just writing your life story.

A memoir isn't one long diary entry. Rather, it's a well-crafted story about a crucial, often exceptionally difficult, time in someone's life. Writing & Selling Your Memoir talks readers through the process of telling their most personal stories in a compelling, relatable, and readable manner. Unlike other books dedicated to the art and craft of writing memoir, it teaches ...

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Writing & Selling Your Memoir: How to Craft Your Life Story So That Somebody Else Will Actually Want to Read It

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Overview

There's more to writing a memoir than just writing your life story.

A memoir isn't one long diary entry. Rather, it's a well-crafted story about a crucial, often exceptionally difficult, time in someone's life. Writing & Selling Your Memoir talks readers through the process of telling their most personal stories in a compelling, relatable, and readable manner. Unlike other books dedicated to the art and craft of writing memoir, it teaches readers how to approach the genre with love, respect, and know-how without sentimentalizing it.

Drawing on her experience working with New York Times best-selling memoirists, literary agent Paula Balzer carefully explores the genre and provides readers with step-by-step instruction on how to:

  • Identify strong opening and closing points
  • Find and develop a strong central hook that readers can relate to
  • Structure a memoir to maximize readability
  • Use dialogue and pacing to enhance intimacy
  • Approach honesty and truthfulness
  • Build a successful author platform around their memoir
  • Get an agent's attention
  • Get published

Full of tips, techniques, detailed exercises, and examples from best-selling memoirs as well as sidebars from well-known memoir authors, Writing & Selling Your Memoir teaches you how to approach an often tricky genre and tell your story without sentimentalizing it.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781599631356
  • Publisher: F+W Media
  • Publication date: 7/9/2011
  • Pages: 240
  • Sales rank: 434,235
  • Product dimensions: 5.50 (w) x 8.40 (h) x 0.80 (d)

Meet the Author

Paula Balzer is a literary agent for New York Times best-selling author Alexandra Robbins, Oscar-award winning writer Diablo Cody, and American Idol judge Randy Jackson amongst many more. In addition to her day job being a literary agent, she is the cofounder of Ad Hoc Mom (Ad Hoc Mom http://adhocmom.com) a popular, humorous blog centered around juggling being a parent while having a career. A recent transplant from Brooklyn, she lives in New Jersey with her family.

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Table of Contents

Intro: Why Write Your Memoir? 1

Part I preparing to write

Chapter 1 Understanding the Genre 6

Chapter 2 What's Your Hook? 29

Chapter 3 Setting Your Parameters 46

Part 2 the memoirist's toolbox

Chapter 4 Structure: Designing Your Memoirs Blueprint 64

Chapter 5 Voice: How to Find It, How to Use It 84

Chapter 6 Dialogue & Pacing, Killer First Paragraphs, and Awful First Drafts 104

Part 3 becoming the kind of writer publishers want

Chapter 7 Setting Goals & Deadlines: Why a Writer Without Either is Looking for Trouble 121

Chapter 8 The Three Major Distractions: How to Avoid Them So You Can Stay Focused and Produce Your Best Work 129

Chapter 9 Being Stuck Productively 142

Chapter 10 Editing Your Work and Improving Your Craft 147

Chapter 11 What's Your Platform? Why You Need to Be Able to Answer This Question Before You Approach Agents 159

Chapter 12 Social Media: The Best Thing to Come Along for Authors Since Coffee 173

Chapter 13 Everything You Ever Wanted to Know About Literary Agents and How to Get One 184

Chapter 14 Your Book's Publication From Point A to Point B 203

Chapter 15 Controversy: Navigating the Difficult Waters of Memoir Writing 215

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Sort by: Showing 1 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted November 30, 2012

    quite good

    A very helpful guide. I will be referencing this book throughout the process of writing my memoir.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
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