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Turning Memories Into Memoirs: A Handbook for Writing Lifestories Paperback – Sep 1 1992


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Paperback, Sep 1 1992
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 206 pages
  • Publisher: Soleil Press (September 1992)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0961937327
  • ISBN-13: 978-0961937324
  • Product Dimensions: 22.6 x 17.5 x 1 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 249 g
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #587,173 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)


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Stories fascinate us all our lives. Read the first page
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Front Cover | Copyright | Table of Contents | Excerpt | Index | Back Cover
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Most helpful customer reviews

Format: Paperback
This book reminds me of a Workshop in a Book. The author suggests the reader first go through the first two chapters "Before You Start" and "Starting" and then, feel more free to "hop scotch" through the other chapters... actually, I added the hop scotch part, but hopefully you get the metaphor within the Life Writing review.
Strengths of this book include the check lists, the plethora of exercises to support your writing process. It definitely inspires action rather than just READING about memoir writing, if you follow through the book and work as you go, you will get your stories out and into tangible form.
I appreciated quotes from many writers who I admire such as Natalie Goldberg and Rainer Rilke.
The weaknesses of the book are the lay out (I would prefer a more spacious feeling - perhaps by taking out some of the workshop examples and allowing the reader/writer to be inspired by his/her own process instead) and some of the tone, which I could see bringing blocks to the writer (see, for example, the discussion of "Truth" and "Facts.")
I also notice and wanted to inform you there is also a strong sense of this book being a sales piece for the Soleil Network and the Workshops run by the author. Notes at the end - resources perhaps, would be fitting.... But there were these notices, and inserts, and the lengthy workshop examples..... so just to let you know that is there in case that is something that would get in the way of receiving full value for you.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: 15 reviews
45 of 46 people found the following review helpful
The Complete guide to memoir writing Oct. 14 2000
By Maryanne Raphael - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
This book can change your life. It has all the information, enthusiasm and tools you need to turn your own experiences into a successful book.. Even more important, it can help you see the beauty and magic of daily life, examine your inner self , begin to heal the hidden wounds, and recognize your deepest feelings and fondest dreams. It can help you find order and meaning in the chaos of existence and give you a glimpse of who you are and what you really want to be.
The author's advice is simple to understand and easy to follow. All you need to do is drop your inhibitions. "..start with the writing skills you have. As you write you will learn more about writing and your skills will increase." He tells us Writing is our best teacher.
Author Ledoux feels that most people are afraid of writing and his book shows you how to overcome your fears and produce interesting, dramatic meaningful stories. He breaks writing a book down into parts and guides you through one step at a time. To begin he shows you how to make time for writing by following a schedule of pages or time . He helps you shift through your memories and choose which ones to write about. He helps you see and describe details that make your stories come alive . He shows you how to do interviews and intensive research, how to choose a point of view, how to avoid cliches, redundancies and stereotypes, how to be precise and clear.
Not only every writer, but every reader can benefit from this book. By introducing you to the ancient art of storytelling, it reaffirms the meaning of life.. It takes you on a magical journey back in time and gives you the tools to become the bridge to connect your ancestors to your descendants.
By Maryanne Raphael Writers World
33 of 33 people found the following review helpful
Animate Your Memories Jan. 24 2002
By Susan Shotthafer - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
Few of us are blessed with the recorded memories of our parents, grandparents, or great-grandparents. Perhaps, until recently, many of us gave little thought to preserving our memories for family members who follow us. The idea that "ordinary" people possess life experiences holding the power to reassure, encourage, and inspire their grandchildren and great-grandchildren is increasingly gaining attention and respect.
Maybe, on your own initiative, you have decided to strengthen the bond you have created with your grandchildren by beginning to record your life experiences to share with them. Or, maybe for some time, your children have been pestering you to record your memories.
But, perhaps you have written little in years. Or, perhaps you have only a slight notion of the procedure for this seemingly daunting task of composing memoirs. Denis Ledoux, author of Turning Memories Into Memoirs, understands the uncertainties that can overwhelm when we do not know how and where to begin writing the stories of our lives. Convinced that "everybody's got a story," Ledoux, a published fiction and non-fiction writer with years of experience teaching at both the secondary and university level, has incorporated the sum of his skills and knowledge into his Turning Memories Into Memoirs. His additional fourteen years of experience in teaching life story writing workshops provide first-hand expertise in the instruction of memoir writing.
Ledoux's Turning Memories Into Memoirs offers advice for planning and adhering to a regularly scheduled writing time. This memory writng guide will enable you to write memories that your family members will want to read again and again by teaching you to include and focus on the elements fundamental to all successful storytelling. Ledoux teaches you how to organize and prioritize your stories so that you will be sure to begin with memories that best exemplify the life you have lived. His in-depth discussion of the requisite for truthful storytelling and advice for dealing with controversy provides guidance for first-time storytellers facing the dilemma of wanting to write honestly without being harsh or offensive. Just a few other topics covered are "memory jogs," painful memories, the avoidance of preaching, and "the finished product." Included, you will also find memoirs written by Ledoux's workshop participants. Ledoux's guide is comprehensive yet concise and answers virtually every question you might have when you write your memoirs.
25 of 25 people found the following review helpful
Packed with Material..... April 22 2004
By Julie Jordan Scott - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
This book reminds me of a Workshop in a Book. The author suggests the reader first go through the first two chapters "Before You Start" and "Starting" and then, feel more free to "hop scotch" through the other chapters... actually, I added the hop scotch part, but hopefully you get the metaphor within the Life Writing review.
Strengths of this book include the check lists, the plethora of exercises to support your writing process. It definitely inspires action rather than just READING about memoir writing, if you follow through the book and work as you go, you will get your stories out and into tangible form.
I appreciated quotes from many writers who I admire such as Natalie Goldberg and Rainer Rilke.
The weaknesses of the book are the lay out (I would prefer a more spacious feeling - perhaps by taking out some of the workshop examples and allowing the reader/writer to be inspired by his/her own process instead) and some of the tone, which I could see bringing blocks to the writer (see, for example, the discussion of "Truth" and "Facts.")
I also notice and wanted to inform you there is also a strong sense of this book being a sales piece for the Soleil Network and the Workshops run by the author. Notes at the end - resources perhaps, would be fitting.... But there were these notices, and inserts, and the lengthy workshop examples..... so just to let you know that is there in case that is something that would get in the way of receiving full value for you.
12 of 12 people found the following review helpful
Animate Your Memories Jan. 24 2002
By Susan Shotthafer - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
Few of us are blessed with the recorded memories of our parents, grandparents, or great-grandparents. Perhaps, until recently, many of us gave little thought to preserving our memories for family members who follow us. The idea that "ordinary" people possess life experiences holding the power to reassure, encourage, and inspire their grandchildren and great-grandchildren is increasingly gaining attention and respect.
Maybe, on your own initiative, you have decided to strengthen the bond you have created with your grandchildren by beginning to record your life experiences to share with them. Or, maybe for some time, your children have been pestering you to record your memories.
But, perhaps you have written little in years. Or, perhaps you have only a slight notion of the procedure for this seemingly daunting task of composing memoirs. Denis Ledoux, author of Turning Memories Into Memoirs, understands the uncertainties that can overwhelm when we do not know how and where to begin writing the stories of our lives. Convinced that "everybody's got a story," Ledoux, a published fiction and non-fiction writer with years of experience teaching at both the secondary and university level, has incorporated the sum of his skills and knowledge into his Turning Memories Into Memoirs. His additional fourteen years of experience in teaching life story writing workshops provide first-hand expertise in the instruction of memoir writing.
Ledoux's Turning Memories Into Memoirs offers advice for planning and adhering to a regularly scheduled writing time. This memory writng guide will enable you to write memories that your family members will want to read again and again by teaching you to include and focus on the elements fundamental to all successful storytelling. Ledoux teaches you how to organize and prioritize memories so that you will be sure to begin with memories that best exemplify the life you have lived. His in-depth discussion of the requisite for truthful storytelling and advice for dealing with controversy provides guidance for first-time storytellers facing the dilemma of wanting to write honestly without being harsh or offensive. Just a few other topics covered are "memory jogs," painful memories, the avoidance of preaching, and "the finished product." Included, you will also find memoirs written by Ledoux's workshop participants. Ledoux's guide is comprehensive yet concise and answers virtually every question you might have when you write your memoirs.
10 of 11 people found the following review helpful
Wonderful ideas to help you get started April 26 1999
By A Customer - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
This book is well written, easy to follow, and full of exercises to improve your writing skills. I am scrapbooking my grandmother's photos, and this book has been an invaluable resource as I encourage her to tell me the "Who's," "What's" and "When's" of our family history.

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