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Where to start a memoir

July 7, 2009

womens-memoirs-mastheadI was asked an interesting question in an interview in WomensMemoirs.com about my opening to Happily Ever After Divorce: Notes of a Joyful Journey.  How and where do you start a memoir?  Here’s how the question was posed:

“Are you are having a hard time with the opening to your memoir? Don’t know where to start? Wondering how many times you have to rewrite it to get it just right? Then you’ll take comfort in listening in as Jessica tells how many rewrites she did before her opening was ready for publication. [Hint: She calculates she rewrote it as many times as Hemmingway said he rewrote the first part of A Farewell to Arms.]”

Visit the site to hear a clip of the interview.  You’ll hear me admit that my half page opening called “Introduction: Into the Sunlight,” was once twelve pages long, and went through more re-writes than I care to remember.

In the full interview I talk about my early writing life on a “desk” made out of a cardboard box at the back of a deep closet.  I also answer some fascinating questions posed by writers can be heard here. I invite you to listen.

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