Week One: Telling the Truth
What are the obstacles to honesty and integrity in memoir, and how are they affecting your writing process? In this first lesson, we examine the deceptively daunting challenge of being transparent and fearless on the page.
Week Two: Secrets and Lies
Before such candor is possible, it is necessary to uncover the “falsehoods of self” that weaken storytelling and block personal insight. In this lesson, you will learn to identify blind spots in self-awareness, as well as the secrets you keep (from yourself and others) that interfere with full disclosure.
Week Three: Protecting Others
The urge to protect others from upset or exposure is a major cause of self-censorship among memoir writers. In this lesson, you’ll examine how concerns over privacy, loyalty, and exploitation prevent you from fully “owning” your story and writing with a clear conscience.
Week Four: Beyond Shame
Shame is a primary cause of resistance for memoir writers. In this lesson, you will look closely at your shame stories, how they shape your memoir, and how to dispel them.
Week Five: Your Pilgrim Soul
When you move past shame, you touch the spiritual dimension of experience, without which your memoir will be shallow. In this lesson, you consider the spiritual dimension of your story and your life as a journey of awakening.
Week Six: The Myth of Closure
Awareness teaches you that experience is not linear, and that life stories are rich and complex. In this lesson, you learn to mirror this principle in your storytelling, avoiding oversimplification and clear-cut endings, for maximum credibility.