I have been reading Mary Karr’s excellent book, The Art of Memoir, and sharing it with my memoir group. I think is the best book on writing memoir out there. Karr knows what she’s talking about because she has written three memoirs, including Liar’s Club, Cherry and Lit, and she is often credited with popularizing the genre. I was teaching … Read More
Memoirists are Our Contemporary Mythmakers
I believe that memoirists are our contemporary mythmakers. When I was teaching a course entitled Myth and Memoir at Pacifica Graduate Institute it became clear to me that some of the same archetypal themes found in myth, such as a search for origins, for one’s identity, the mother-child relationship, initiation, journey, descent and return were also found in contemporary memoirs. … Read More
What is Memoir Writing?
Memoir often gets confused with autobiography and biography. Memoir is not a linear autobiography recounting a fully lived life, but rather a selected aspect of the writer’s life, written from his or her point of view. Rather than simply recounting an incident or memory from her life, the memoirist both tells the story and tries to make meaning out of … Read More