Sunday, December 18, 2016

Final Free Tutorial on Writing a Memoir or Biography (3)

Now that you have the pieces gathered together for the first chapter it’s time to start writing.

Put the pictures that apply to the first chapter in order, add in your notes on the location, whether from a personal visit or online searches and virtual walk-arounds. 

Decide in what kind of style you’d like to write it. It’s your book, your family story, and you can tell it in any way you like. Let me give you a few ideas:

We’ll take a town in the Netherlands as our ancestral location. 

  1. Conversational style: Walking along the cobble stone streets that lead to the market and center of town, just below the Gothic cathedral, I see for the first time where my grandfather had his market stall. To this day, every Tuesday there’s a market that sets up, and fresh produce, flowers, breads and meats are hawked by boisterous merchants.  
  2. Factual style: My grandfather was born on the cusp on 1900. He came from a family of merchants that set up their wares, mostly copper pots and household goods at a market stall in the center of Breda, the Netherlands. On other days of the week they would take a horse and cart and sell door to door. By the 1920s they had a shop just off main street.
  3. Historically rich style: Breda, a town in the south of the Netherlands, not far from the Belgian border has a rich history spanning many centuries. It’s rich architecture and well-preserved historical details speak to a past that was anything but boring. It’s also where my grandfather was born into a merchant family. 

So you see, you can start your story any way you like. 

And as always, I am available to offer guidance on your family history project, or to hold a presentation for your group. I also take on a few full memoir/family history writing projects each year; from shoe box of pictures to printed book.
Contact me at: elynnh2write (at)

Or feel free to leave a comment below. 

1 comment:

  1. That image looks familiar. Thanks for your interesting and useful tips!