I entered two memoirs in the Ventura Writer's Club Memoir Contest. One, Baker, took the second place prize. This one, The Wart, did not win any prize. In a way, I'm glad it didn't. As it is, it isn't a true memoir, because I made up what happened after I was sent out...read more
I was about to comment about the four miles between where we were and where we were going when Baker waved his hand in front of my face and a switchblade knife snapped open.
To say that scared me was an understatement.
“You know…” he said in a very hushed voice. “You know, I could kill you, real quiet like.”read more
“I don’t think there’s anything wrong with your eyes,” the eye doctor said, “I think it’s in your head.” “What,” I thought, “is he trying to tell me I’m imagining it or that I’m crazy?” “There is no problem with your eyes,” he continued. “You have 20-20 vision. I...read more
Sometimes I think I'm a scratched record, repeating the same lyrics again and again. However, I was a teacher for a few years and learned that not every student understood something the first time I explained it. Often I had to repeat and rephrase, using different...read more
I love to watch Gene Kelly dance. He's so smooth, so confident on his feet. When I saw this video I was totally amazed, especially considering my own experiences on roller skates. How could anybody tap dance (at the 2:18 mark) on four little wheels? My father met my...read more
I was working on a couple memoirs, hoping to post one of them here today, but it's not ready yet. The other is for the Ventura Writer's Memoir Contest, which I will post here after the contest. For today I have a little form, a basic outline I use to help me get my...read more
Mistakes you’re likely to make. The past few weeks I’ve been talking about writing a personal essay or memoir essay. Memoirs that are usually short -- at least 500 words, less than 15,000. For some people writing a personal essay is a prelude, a warm-up to writing a...read more
A couple weeks ago took part in a panel discussion about memoir writing. A big concern of the audience had to do with being honest and naming names. I think the answers we gave were adequate, but I’ve been thinking about them off and on ever since. First be as honest...read more
Every Monday I'll be adding a memoir related post to this blog. Last week I began by telling some of what I’ve learned about writing the memoir or personal essay and left you with some techniques to help you choose a story from your life to write about. My goal is to...read more
Memoir writing takes guts. It’s revealing and personal – sometimes even painful to put on the page. Some people know exactly what they want to write about when they start. Most of us live such interesting lives that we often think to ourselves, Should I write a...read more
So we’re walking down the street. It’s a beautiful day in San Salvador, El Salvador’s capital city. Leah is eating ice cream from a cup. I’m eating a two scoop ice cream cone. A taxi pulls up alongside us. I can see a woman in the back seat furiously rolling down the...read more
Sayings of Caledon Pritz