When I speak with people who want to write their memoir but haven’t, they are often not able to figure out where to start. People feel that they need to have a grandiose plan of exactly what their memoir is going to look like before even writing the first word.
My advice has always been to stop worrying about the plan and just start writing. Write one story every other week, and after two or three months, sit back, and think about how these stories will fit into an overall memoir plan.
The benefits of this approach are many. Firstly, it can often be more difficult to start something than it is to keep going. The act of starting to write a memoir can significantly increase the probability that you will finish.
Additionally, unless you are a professional memoir writer or personal historian, the plans you make before starting to write will not be very good. The information you use to come up with your plan would be from how you imagine writing will be, which will be different from how writing actually is. Once you have two or three months experience actually writing, you will be in a much better position to plan out the remainder of your memoir project.
If you want to start your memoir, just get started. Think of a fun story and write it down. Then do it again. Before you know it, you’ll have a memoir!
This article is part of the How To Write Your Memoir series.