(510) 859-4718 customersupport@namw.org

 Mark Matousek

February 6, 2014


 Free Teleseminar–Sign up below to get the call-in number.

One major challenge in memoir writing is the self changes over time.  Who you (or your narrator) were 30 years ago is not who you are today; not even your cells are the same (we get a whole new body of cells every seven years); so who is this “I” who’s telling this story?  Linda Joy Myers and Mark Matousek will be talking about how to work with the shifting psyche in memoir and how your choice of self (who you were 30 years in the past?  Or yesterday?) shapes the truth of your story.  We will discuss the connection between self and imagination, and how imagination helps inform memory.


 None of us has only one voice; we all house many characters who evolve, appear, and disappear over time.  Just as there is no solid self, there is no solid, monolithic story—as all memoir writers know.  

“Do I contradict myself?” asked Walt Whitman in “Leaves of Grass.”

 “Very well, then I contradict myself./I am large./I contain multitudes.”  

We’ll examine the paradox of self, memory, and imagination in this conversation.


What you’ll learn:

— How to locate the self who can tell your story

— The importance of context and temporal frame in focusing this self  

— How to work with contradictions between past self and present self in memoir

— The connection between imagination and memory in the changing self

— The fluid nature of truth as we evolve over time


Mark Matousek is the author of two award-winning memoirs, Sex Death, Enlightenment: A True Story (an international bestseller) and The Boy He Left Behind: A Man’s Search For His Lost Father (Los Angeles Times Discovery Book), as well as When You’re Falling, Dive: Lessons in the Art of Living and Ethical Wisdom: The Search for a Moral Life.  A featured blogger for Psychology Today, Purple Clover, Huffington Post, he has contributed to numerous anthologies and publications including The New Yorker, O: The Oprah Magazine (contributing editor), The New York Times Magazine, Tricycle: The Buddhist Review, and many others. A popular lecturer and writing teacher, he is the Creative Director of V-Men (with Eve Ensler), an organization devoted to ending violence against women and girls. His latest book is Ethical Wisdom for Friends.


Psychology Today Interview with Mark Matousek and Linda Joy Myers

Click here to read interview.

Click here to listen to podcast.




 February Roundtable with Mark Matousek

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