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Thread: What is your memoir or biography about?

  1. #76
    Swan in Process Siri Kirpal's Avatar
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    Sat Nam! (literally "Truth Name"--a Sikh greeting)

    Right at the moment, I'm swamped with my own revisions, and expect to be for the next few months. But I'll probably be available in summer. You can pm me then.

    And yes, post a two or three sections in SYW first.

    Blessings,

    Siri Kirpal
    "The only freedom any of us ever has is the freedom to choose how we will not be free."

  2. #77
    figuring it all out Vortex Theory's Avatar
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    I will! Summer seems like a more realistic timeline for me anyway, considering I work full-time and manage a household in between my creative endeavors. And again, thank you for your encouragement!
    It's got your lighter. And that missing sock.

  3. #78
    Counting My Blessings spirit110's Avatar
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    I am the only journalist in the world who has interviewed Bill Gates twice! Oh yeah, the first time was as a male reporter, the second time as a female. Yes, Counting My Blessings from Zero to One is the story of a writer who abandons her male privilege to achieve truth, justice and most importantly laughter! While there are no animals harmed in the making of this story, many members of my family, however, suffered extensive damage.
    Barbara

  4. #79
    It's too hot Mclesh's Avatar
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    Lately I've been working on my story: I'm two-time breast cancer survivor. My first experience, I was 34 and my son was two years old. (My young son was probably the hardest thing for me to deal with at the time; I was so fearful of leaving him behind.) In 2012, my cancer resurfaced and I underwent a bilateral mastectomy in May of 2012, then reconstruction this past November. I've written a small series of blog posts falling under the heading: The Cancer Diaries, and I'm basically working on expanding my experiences, life lessons, and coping skills into a short e-book.

    At this point, I'm planning (hoping) to hire an outside editor and self-publish once I feel I have something worth sharing. I want to add my story to the millions of stories out there and possibly help other women dealing with breast cancer.

    Okay, now I've said it publicly.

  5. #80
    Swan in Process Siri Kirpal's Avatar
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    Sat Nam! (literally "Truth Name"--a Sikh greeting)

    May that goal give you the push to continue to survive, McLesh.

    Blessings,

    Siri Kirpal
    "The only freedom any of us ever has is the freedom to choose how we will not be free."

  6. #81
    It's too hot Mclesh's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Siri Kirpal View Post
    Sat Nam! (literally "Truth Name"--a Sikh greeting)

    May that goal give you the push to continue to survive, McLesh.

    Blessings,

    Siri Kirpal
    Aw, thank you, Siri. I appreciate your kind words. I'm cancer free now. The old bod is taking longer than I would like, though, to heal and get back to work at my day job. The book project is helping me use my time a bit more constructively.

  7. #82
    Swan in Process Siri Kirpal's Avatar
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    Sat Nam! (literally "Truth Name"--a Sikh greeting)

    Relic, why on earth would you think that a book of a firefighter's odder experiences wouldn't do well? That doesn't sound pedestrian to me at all.

    And Scatterjoy, best of luck!

    And folks, there's a Share Your Work section for memoir. Once you reach 50 posts, you can post a section and get feedback. Password is "vista."

    Blessings,

    Siri Kirpal
    "The only freedom any of us ever has is the freedom to choose how we will not be free."

  8. #83
    Swan in Process Siri Kirpal's Avatar
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    Sat Nam! (literally "Truth Name"--a Sikh greeting)

    Ah, well, if there are a bunch of others, that makes sense.

    Blessings,

    Siri Kirpal
    "The only freedom any of us ever has is the freedom to choose how we will not be free."

  9. #84
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    Been working on it on again and off again, but mine covers my adoption to Russian Atheist Jews who went to a Unitarian Universalist church for ten years and the emotional abuse I suffered through bullying at school and at home (in the form of a parent) until I met my Korean father who turned out to be a Buddhist monk (who drinks, eats meat and goes to singing rooms... XD)

    I'm on the fence about presenting the abusive relationship I also went through in my early twenties... it's a tangent and yet not a tangent too... (And I know it was abusive since he was throwing things closer to me when he was upset... and my things...)

    It's ambitious, though, since I want to give a wider view of adoption than my own in order to contextualize my actions and views which means I have to present a little about the history of adoption itself which I see as a weakness of other memoirs in adoption.

    It's a story of fighting and surviving... as much as it is about adoption.

  10. #85
    Swan in Process Siri Kirpal's Avatar
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    Sat Nam! (literally "Truth Name"--a Sikh greeting)

    Sounds interesting, Rachel! Since your focus is on the adoption, I'd suggest only including the abuses that aren't tangental to your story.

    Blessings,

    Siri Kirpal
    "The only freedom any of us ever has is the freedom to choose how we will not be free."

  11. #86
    figuring it all out
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    My story of surviving cancer while pregnant with my fifth child.

  12. #87
    make up real Jim Williams's Avatar
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    I read somewhere the market is flooded with memoirs such as mine. What does anyone know about memoirs surrounding 10 years of urban street living as a focus?

  13. #88
    More cowbell! randi.lee's Avatar
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    I'm writing a series of short essays about the humorous life of growing up with my big brother. There are so many stories about the stupid--and life threatening--situations he got us into, I'm pretty sure I could generate a David Sedaris-esque series from them.
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  14. #89
    Swan in Process Siri Kirpal's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jim Williams View Post
    I read somewhere the market is flooded with memoirs such as mine. What does anyone know about memoirs surrounding 10 years of urban street living as a focus?
    Sat Nam! (literally "Truth Name"--a Sikh greeting)

    Are you talking about homelessness? Or street kids/gangs? Whichever it is, search for it on Amazon (i.e. homeless memoirs, street gang memoirs) and see what comes up. There's a lady who's written a series of memoirs on the topic; not remembering the name but it begins with L and her agent is Anne Edelstein, so you could go into aeliterary.com and check the author list.

    Blessings,

    Siri Kirpal
    "The only freedom any of us ever has is the freedom to choose how we will not be free."

  15. #90
    make up real Jim Williams's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Siri Kirpal View Post
    Sat Nam! (literally "Truth Name"--a Sikh greeting)

    Are you talking about homelessness? Or street kids/gangs? Whichever it is, search for it on Amazon (i.e. homeless memoirs, street gang memoirs) and see what comes up. There's a lady who's written a series of memoirs on the topic; not remembering the name but it begins with L and her agent is Anne Edelstein, so you could go into aeliterary.com and check the author list.

    Blessings,

    Siri Kirpal
    Thanks for the references. I'll look further.

    I meant homelessness. I'm using an accepted definition of homeless being, "without permanent housing", as compared to street living, which means, I guess, "no housing at all", i.e., outside only. I rely on the two definitions since I have 15 years homeless, of which only ten years were on the street themselves.

    Note: I followed your references and they are a major help. I never thought of Amazon and am encouraged to find a total of four other books in my specific area. I was glad to find Anne Edelstein available at Query Tracker, although I couldn't find the author you mentioned.
    Last edited by Jim Williams; 07-08-2013 at 05:43 AM. Reason: grammar error/added information

  16. #91
    Swan in Process Siri Kirpal's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jim Williams View Post
    Thanks for the references. I'll look further.

    I meant homelessness. I'm using an accepted definition of homeless being, "without permanent housing", as compared to street living, which means, I guess, "no housing at all", i.e., outside only. I rely on the two definitions since I have 15 years homeless, of which only ten years were on the street themselves.

    Note: I followed your references and they are a major help. I never thought of Amazon and am encouraged to find a total of four other books in my specific area. I was glad to find Anne Edelstein available at Query Tracker, although I couldn't find the author you mentioned.
    Sat Nam! (literally "Truth Name"--a Sikh greeting)

    Anne Edelstein's client did something similar, I think. Go into the agent's own website and scroll through the "L"s. Or check the agent's own website for the memoirs she's repped.

    Blessings,

    Siri Kirpal
    "The only freedom any of us ever has is the freedom to choose how we will not be free."

  17. #92
    make up real Jim Williams's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Siri Kirpal View Post
    Sat Nam! (literally "Truth Name"--a Sikh greeting)

    Anne Edelstein's client did something similar, I think. Go into the agent's own website and scroll through the "L"s. Or check the agent's own website for the memoirs she's repped.

    Blessings,

    Siri Kirpal
    Thanks again. I did go to her website and found one woman in the "L"s, but she writes mostly about the Old West. My memoir is about both having been homeless and having mental difficulties. Amazon reveals hundreds of books on both subjects, but only four on both subjects together. I can hope.

    By the way, my brother lives in Eugene. Lovely town.

  18. #93
    Swan in Process Siri Kirpal's Avatar
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    Sat Nam! (literally "Truth Name"--a Sikh greeting)

    I went and checked. The client's name is Jennifer Lauck, and she's written about being homeless in LA. But I don't think mental difficulties played a part in it.

    Blessings,

    Siri Kirpal
    "The only freedom any of us ever has is the freedom to choose how we will not be free."

  19. #94
    make up real Jim Williams's Avatar
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    Siri Kirpal:

    Amazon has four of her books, although the primary issues seem to revolve around different stories than being homeless itself while they don't appear to exclude the possibility either. I didn't get the sense of mental difficulties are so much part of any of the four. In my experience on the streets, mental difficulties were very common among the homeless, including me, but even here in San Francisco the subject isn't talked about that much.

    Thanks for looking that up. It is appreciated.

    Jim Williams

  20. #95
    Swan in Process Siri Kirpal's Avatar
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    Sat Nam! (literally "Truth Name"--a Sikh greeting)

    I would assume that the reason few homelessness memoirs mention mental problems is that few people who get out of homelessness are mental wrecks. So, someone who was and got out of it might have a very interesting story.

    The trick is to tell it well. For help with that, I'd read a couple of the better memoirs--say one on homelessness and one or two on mental problems.

    Blessings,

    Siri Kirpal
    "The only freedom any of us ever has is the freedom to choose how we will not be free."

  21. #96
    make up real Jim Williams's Avatar
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    Hi:

    I have gotten out of it, but you are right, the trick for me will be in my telling. In that regard, to quote from an agent rejection letter, "I'm sorry to say that I wasn't wholeheartedly with your description of the story, despite its many intriguing qualities...",When I got that I knew I had my work cut out for me.

    The only memoir I've read specific to the mental side of it is Eden Express by Mark Vonnegut, son of Kurt. It caused me to feel as maybe I can do it too.

    Thanks to you, I now have a list of memoirs by the homeless. Amazon never dawned on me.

    Jim W.

  22. #97
    Swan in Process Siri Kirpal's Avatar
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    Sat Nam! (literally "Truth Name"--a Sikh greeting)

    Also read some on mental problems. Girl Interrupted and The Glass Castle are two that get good reviews, not that I've read either.

    Blessings,

    Siri Kirpal
    "The only freedom any of us ever has is the freedom to choose how we will not be free."

  23. #98
    make up real Jim Williams's Avatar
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    I've heard of the Glass Castle. I'm going to look into both.

    Thanks again;

    Jim W.

  24. #99
    figuring it all out vickinicole's Avatar
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    mine is an autobiography about my life, it discusses religion, fame, depression, pornography, child abuse, religious cults and more.

  25. #100
    DẴƊ ḈỂƝŦƐȐ ƉẪḒ Requiescat In Pace Donnie Marsh's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jim Williams View Post
    I've heard of the Glass Castle. I'm going to look into both.

    Thanks again;

    Jim W.
    The Glass Castle is AWESOME. Highly recommended.

    My memoir is on losing people to friendship and relationship failures, and death.

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