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Discover the Story Amidst the Facts

with Jerry Waxler

Three sessions
Dates:February 8, 15, 22, 2010
Times: 4 PM PST, 5 PM MST, 6 PM CST, 7 PM EST
Cost: $165.00 non-members
$145.00 NAMW Members | Become a member of NAMW now to get a workshop discount!

Many aspiring writers fear their lives are not interesting enough to keep people reading from beginning to end. Successful authors take the opposite point of view, that the events of a lifetime contain sufficient material and that the writer’s real job is to find the story. In this course, you’ll learn to view your collection of memories not as a ready-made story, but as the raw material. Like a sculptor looking at a block of granite to find the beautiful figure inside, a memoir writer looks at the disorganized tangle of memories, looking for pieces that can be linked and shaped into a compelling story.

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Session 1: Apply reading stories to learn how to tell a compelling one. What keeps you interested? Read memoirs. Look at the parts that make up a compelling story, and see how to turn them into strategies for your memoir.

Session 2: Turning memories into stories: Connect the dots, from chronology, to scenes, to whole stories.

Session 3: Why anyone should read your memoir to the end:
Protagonist wants something, overcomes obstacles, achieves, and grows.

The interplay between inner and outer story in memoir writing. All stories describe external events, while inside the protagonist emotions, choices, learning, and other inner processes are taking place. Memoirs have a particular responsibility to telling the inner story. We’ll explore key facts about how memoirs reveal your inner world (character arc, emotional authenticity).
Audios of all sessions are available to workshop members.

Jerry Waxler, M.S., is an experienced memoir workshop leader and a member of the advisory board for the National Association of Memoir Writers. He is a writing coach and therapist, and the author of Write Your Memoir in Four Weeks and Four Elements for Writers, and the creator of the Memory Writers Network blog, which features over 150 essays, book reviews, stories, and writing prompts about reading and writing .

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