Writing your life story can be an intimidating task. How do I know? I wrote about mine. How do you fit your entire life into one piece of writing? Or even more daunting, how do you make it interesting enough to draw readers in? Fear not! I have some tips and tricks to help you write the best manuscript possible about your life!
Start with Pre-Writing
The first step when starting any project is pre-writing. This includes gathering research, brainstorming ideas and topics, outlining a plan of action, etc. When writing about your life, it is important to be thorough and look for the significant events that shaped who you are today and the small moments that were so impactful in their own way. You don’t need to spend too much time going over every single moment, but if something stands out – write it down!
Admission & Reflection: The Self-Interrogation Process
Once you have gathered all of the information on yourself, it’s time for self-reflection. This allows for a deeper understanding and analysis of yourself; this process will also allow for admission, which is vital to create honest and authentic writing. Ask yourself questions such as: What makes me unique? What was my role in certain events? What can I learn from these experiences? Asking these questions will help provide insight into your character while helping with creating an engaging storyline.
Write it & Share It
Once you have gathered all of the information, it’s time to start writing. After finishing your draft, go back through and review it with a fine comb – give yourself constructive criticism by asking: Was this description necessary? Could I have conveyed this emotion better? Is there anything else I can add to enhance this story arch? Don’t let perfectionism get in the way; once you feel comfortable with where your manuscript stands, share it with friends or family members for feedback. One more tidbit: If you have a mailing list, look into recruiting at least two people to be your BETA readers and give them some questions similar to the ones you asked yourself. Make adjustments as necessary based on the feedback from your friends and those BETA readers who aren’t your friends.