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How to Write Snapshots: the 100 word Memoir
Grant Faulkner 
October 23, 2020
11 AM PDT  | 12 PM MDT  | 1 PM CDT |  2 PM EDT

As memoirists, we are challenged by words—which words, how many? How few? I’ve been exploring the idea of finding a way to write shorter, using fewer words. A long narrative memoir style is not for everyone—and we can celebrate that there are many forms a memoir can take.

I’m pleased to have Grant Faulkner with us for our October member teleseminar.

Grant Faulkner is the Executive Director of National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo) and the co-founder of 100 Word Story. We’d like encourage you to take part in the National Novel Writing Month–NaNoWriMo –memoirists are welcome! I’ve known many writers who get a huge chunk of their story down on the page during that intense, high word count commitment: 50,000 words.

While we as memoirists need to cover a lot of ground with our story, we also need to focus inward, have a vertical view and a sense of the depth and meaning of the story we want to tell. Will we give snapshots and allow the reader to to piece together the clues? Or will we dig deep into the emotional and psychological depth of our experience. How can we do both? How do we shape our thinking about this?

Grant shares his thoughts about the 100 word memoir on his website.

“The form speaks to the singularity of stray moments by calling attention to the spectral blank spaces around them; it can perfectly capture the disconnections that existentially define us, whether it’s the gulf between a loved one, the natural world or God. Ghosts are good for writing, I’ve learned, so I’ve invited them in. Our lives are as much about the unspoken as the spoken.”

Join us for an engaging discussion with Grant, tips for writing shorter and with more focus, and a writing exercise.

Read more here.

What you will learn:

  1. How achieve more focus on the themes and messages in your story.
  2. Consider the idea of silence and space and what they may offer us as writers.
  3. The power of suggestion and implication in writing.
  4. The structure of 100 word stories.
  5. How to find the triggers and moments that make a good 100 word story.



Grant Faulkner is the Executive Director of National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo) and the co-founder of 100 Word Story.

He’s published Pep Talks for Writers: 52 Insights and Actions to Boost Your Creative MojoBrave the PageFissures, a collection of 100-word stories; and Nothing Short of 100: Selected Tales from 100 Word Story. His stories have appeared in dozens of literary magazines, including Tin HouseThe Southwest Review, and The Gettysburg Review, as well as in anthologies such as Best Small Fictions and Norton’s New Micro: Exceptionally Short Fiction. His essays on creativity have been published in The New York TimesPoets & WritersWriter’s Digest, and LitHub. He also co-hosts Write-minded, a weekly podcast on writing and publishing.




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