For a couple of years, Luisa attended summer writing workshops at Cannon Beach, Oregon. One of the workshop presenters was poet and author, Judith Barrington. The first book of Judith’s that I read was Lifesaving: A Memoir. This powerful story of a young woman coming to terms with the accidental death of her parents was published in 2000.
When, several years later, I was ready to write my own memoir with a focus on how my daughter’s life and early death affected me and my family, I returned to Barrington. I reread Lifesaving and also read her wonderful volume: Writing The Memoir: From Truth to Art, which highlights the memoir writing process. This is an essential volume for anyone serious about becoming a memoirist. The chapter titles give you an idea of what’s inside:
- Getting started
- Finding form
- Telling the truth
- Using fictional techniques
- Expanding your language skills
- Developing sensory detail
- Writing about living people
- Placing your story in a larger context
- Getting feedback on your work
- Steering clear of common pitfalls
- Legal issues pertaining to memoir
- Guidelines for critique in writers’ groups
I returned many times to both volumes during the four years it took to write my memoir.
Thank you, Judith!
Are you thinking of writing a memoir? Have you read Judith Barrington?