To write a good memoir you must become the editor of your own life, imposing on an untidy sprawl of half-remembered events a narrative shape and an organising idea. Writing a memoir is the art of reinventing the truth.

Writers who keep journals tend to produce more work than those who wait for inspiration to hit them. Writing every day keeps the creative juices flowing, and the journal becomes a source for ideas as well as an instrument for practising and refining writing skills and techniques, such as description, character delineation, and dialogue.

Writing a journal does not need to be a factual record of what you did or thought. Writing can help you pay attention to your life. Write your way into clarity.

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