Breathing on the Mirror: Writing Memoir
Saturday 9 March, 10am-4pm
Full Price: $195
Conc Member: $120
In a big life, where is the story? Everyone has not just one story but thousands. Somewhere in your many years, encounters, lessons and relationships is the tale you need to tell. It may be sad, it may be joyful, complicated or simple, it might be just for you or it might be a story or memoir lots of people can share.
How to condense a whole person into a memorable character on the page? What about the legal and ethical issues—how do you respect someone’s privacy while speaking the truth? And what are the ingredients that make a memoir something not only you will want to read, but people you’ve never met?
It’s one thing to live it; another to write it. Kate Holden takes you through discussion, exercises and the sharing of stories to help you shake off the cobwebs and tumbleweeds and find the story inside you – and how best to make it sing.
The course will include practical components and writing exercises as well discussions focused on theoretical issues.
This memoir writing workshop will cover:
- motives to write
- motives to publish
- memory and verification, clearances and permissions
- legal and ethical issues
- stylistic and voice issues
- refining a story arc
- boring and gripping memoirs and why
Expected Learning Outcomes
- At the end of the day the participants should be feeling that we have run through major logistical and stylistic issues of contemporary memoir.
- We will have talked about and shared impressions of successful (and unsuccessful) published works, described our own projects and challenges, practiced short passages of character-portrayal.
- We will have discussed the legal implications of publication, and fired up enthusiasm for the work ahead.
Pen and paper or preferred device for writing. Please ensure your device is charged.
About the tutor
Kate Holden is the author of In My Skin: A memoir and The Romantic: Italian nights and days, both best-selling non-fiction memoirs published by Text, and writes a longstanding column for the Age. She has thought a great deal about memoir and some of her essays and interviews on the subject are at kate-holden.com