Writing my memoir

Writing my, mother s, memoir : so who Is She really?

I have too many files. . I do accounts for three not-for-profit organisations and each has their own set of files. I realise i need to de-clutter." - colleen Petricevich "My family would like me to write about my long life of 91 years and the adventures, trials and troubles; my childhood on the farm, through the depression, world War Two and overseas travels living and. I write at my lovely six drawer desk in the daylight or with lamps at night. Being methodical each drawer has its own contents. In the middle there is a small drawer for stationery and on the right side the first large drawer contains my banking papers, the second my folders of each of my interests - church, U3A newsletters, other countries, antiques and collectables and the third large.

My computer is in another room in a little alcove by the window wallpaper and thats a wonderful space but theres no room to put pen to paper there. Only room for keyboard and mouse on my small, treasured desk. Addendum: Writing this, i was reminded of what some of the writers at the michael King Writers Centre i am a friend of the centre have said. That the writing room, a converted washhouse, separate from and behind the main house, still has its distraction: the view of the harbour and the boats, through the window. One writer even suggested that the window could be painted over to block out the view!" - elisabeth Olds Wilson "I am fortunate to have my own office, with computer and bookshelves. It is often invaded by my husband, however, who is a computer whiz and is always trying to improve my computer. So i do most of my writing at the kitchen table by hand, then put it into the computer. This seems to work well. I do have a lap-top too. Maybe i am old-fashioned, but I prefer to sort out my thoughts on paper. My desk is an old heavy one almost an antique but serves my purpose well.

writing my memoir

Memoir Writing memoir, examples

A word I dont really like but that aptly describes a comfortable, semi-secluded space in my open plan, light and sunny home. My chair is beside the chair a long, low, wooden seat bench covered with antique afghanistan saddlebag cushions, in muted reds, browns and deep blue. Behind this are open fold back windows, and in front of me wooden louvres, and an open ranch slider. All this looking out onto a colourful garden, bathed in sun. There is the sound of running water from the water feature in the zen garden to my right, and butterflies and bees above the purple tibouchina shrub, the pink sedum, and lavender backed stone seat, to the left. This is where i now like to write surrounded by colour, light and flowers, and the treasures I have collected in the travels of my life. Here is my place of contemplation and inspiration." - beth Jewell "If I write in long hand, Ill sit at the kitchen table strange which has very good light, and a view of Ngataringa bay through the window. Itll have to be a time when its quiet and the kitchen is not in use, of course.

writing my memoir

Alice waters on writing her memoir, coming to

Above the desk is a shelf of reference books, including the dictionary and thesaurus. . Once ive managed to sit down and get my fingers on the keys, the first sentences are followed by a few more, and the story starts to take shape. . Unfortunately, almost always, the writing starts to dwindle away after a couple of paragraphs and I get discouraged and revert to emailing a friend or looking something up on google. . I cant blame the space where i write as, apart from the computer itself, my writing space holds nothing to distract me, nor does anything else nearby intrude on my concentration. . I think that writing happens when the space in the head is full of confidence and I dont think the physical space matters much then." - Susan Grimsdell "I have a black, comfortable tilt back leather chair. Not too squishy and sleep provoking! Its in the snug.

Writing the Truth in, memoir : Dont skimp on Objectivity

writing my memoir

101 Most Influential people Who never lived

A collection of potter memoirs sits obediently on the desk. Inspirational"s and postcard brighten the walls. Theres a turkish rug on the floor, bright crimson. Pens lined up, ready for action. I realise, sadly, that what I lack is not so much a room of my own as self-discipline." - Jocelyn goodman "I write in a sunny room at my laptop which sits on a rimu sewing desk; with phone, dictionary and music CDs to listen. I think i should follow Sarah Waters example of having Rescue remedy at hand dissertation too, in future. I write when I feel inspired by a memory or when others have jolted my conscience.

Sometimes, events like the Christchurch earthquake and its aftermath can cause me to recall what has mapped my life. My families keep letting me know they want my memories in print, for them to enjoy when I take the leap to the other side of the Great divide." - elizabeth Goldsworthy "I write mostly in my head. . I mull over thoughts, ideas and memories. Something will take my interest and I start to form sentences, ready to leave my head and transfer onto a computer screen. . The computer is kept on a triangular desk that fits into a corner behind my floor-to-ceiling bookcase. .

Muddy boots, soggy tents, metal crampons, puffy down sleeping bags airing, climbing harnesses tumbling on the chair. No, inspiration wont strike here. So another corner the study. But what has happened? Of course, its now my husbands sick room (temporarily, i hope) bottles of pills and potions. Discarded piles of newspapers.


Cups of tea, quietly cooling. I cant possibly write in here. . This is to be my space, i shrill to my bemused family. Away with the paraphernalia of illness. Away with the boots and packs. Away with my daughters discarded, damp towels. I shut the door and start to prepare my sanctuary. Ive set up a room of my own. Its tranquil and tasteful.

Examples: Resume, hobbies and, interests

I need to find a place of dissertation solitude in which to write. It must be beautiful and comfortable, but way most of all it must be quiet, free from the demands of family life. Surely, my memoir writing requires nothing less. In my own space, the writing will flow. I cast around for this dream space, filled with both blessed calm and objects to inspire. But in my busy home, real life crowds it out. My eyes rest dismally on the detritus of my sons latest tramping trip.

writing my memoir

Great Uncle donald and his growing family settled in Lyttleton where he had a thriving medical practice. But when an opportunity for further surgical training in Edinburgh arose he booked his family on the tararua, sailing from Christchurch via dunedin. Tragically the whole family was lost at sea when the ship wrecked off the southland coast. The wider family was devastated. Donalds brother, my great grandfather walked the beach for over a week, searching for them, until he was too ill to continue. . A pink marble monument was erected to the family in the Addington finder cemetery in 1889. Hidden by tall yew trees it was toppled by the Christchurch earthquakes in 2010. . I sit on this bed to write, in this vessel, container of stories." - Rosemary barrett "As Virginia woolf famously declared, all women need a room of their own. I dream of mine.

catch dust, and screw holes for the candleholder. The footer is faced with a wooden inset making me wonder, "What is behind the veneer?" I love this bed. I acquired it, as a student, when my Scottish grandmother Annie died. It was her marriage bed, inherited from her Uncle, and undesirable to the rest of the family in the 1960s. Maybe the headboard could be cut into occasional tables, one relative suggested. Nowadays the mattress is covered with Egyptian cotton and my nanas crocheted quilt, sewn after the war, from unravelled, woollen jerseys, the coloured squares carefully matched and edged in black. How could I not write well here? .

I show them some examples of advantages authors studies and urge them to think about their own set-up and whether it is functioning well or in need of modification. The answers, i find, are always as creative as their actual life stories. The most memorable response was from the writer who worked in bed, developing a routine whereby the writing started early in the day and stretched until.30am when there was a glass of red wine and a piece of blue vein cheese to reward. Here is a selection of responses from a recent Life Writing course. "I write from my bed. My bed is more than a bed. It is a family history. It is a beautiful four-poster of Scottish design, made from mottled kauri. The joinery is done with a surgeons skill, for indeed our great uncle,.

Re: Open, letter

Write more write Truer - the inky path. The Inky path will be back here very soon. We have intriguing new courses and workshops coming up such. Kaleidowriting, slowly Unravel and, tiny memoirs. Want to be among the first to find out about the details? Then, bookmark this page, and visit again starting August 1st! Early in my courses i ask participants to write about their writing space.


writing my memoir
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Susan Siddeley finds a tranquil writing place following my memoir workshops for her Los Parronales Writers Retreat. My website Thanks so much for your time and dedication to my moms story.

5 Comment

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