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Friday, April 5 • 3:45pm - 5:00pm
4C: From Personal History to Social History: How To Get Beyond the ME in Memoir FULL
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Every writer of memoir and personal essay is at some point dogged with the question: who cares? As creative nonfiction writers, we can see beyond this question by locating socio-historical stories within our personal narratives, uncovering tales that are about much more than the individual narrator.

In this session, we’ll offer tips and techniques for identifying larger themes in your work, including how to avoid common pitfalls, and how to incorporate reporting techniques (such as interviews, historical research, and old advertisements and commercials) without losing your engaging personal voice. We’ll also provide examples from authors like Ta-Nehisi Coates, Nick Flynn, and Jesmyn Ward, examining how personal narratives are often inseparable from larger histories, communities, and movements. You’ll leave with several examples and take-home writing exercises that will jump-start your efforts to expand the scope of your nonfiction narratives.

Presenters
avatar for Alysia Abbott

Alysia Abbott

Author, FAIRYLAND, A MEMOIR OF MY FATHER
Alysia Abbott is the author of Fairyland: A Memoir of My Father, a recipient of the Madame Figaro Prix Heroine and the ALA Stonewall Award. Named a New York Times Editor's Pick and one of the best books of the year by the SF Chronicle and Shelf Awareness, it was also finalist for... Read More →
avatar for Caitlin McGill

Caitlin McGill

Author, Dogs Run Wild Here
Caitlin McGill’s work has been supported by the Bread Loaf Writers’ conference, The Ragdale Foundation, and the Virginia Center for the Creative Arts, and has appeared or is forthcoming in Blackbird, The Chattahoochee Review, Consequence, Iron Horse Literary Review, The Southeast... Read More →


Friday April 5, 2019 3:45pm - 5:00pm
Cambridge Room - 4th Floor

Attendees (60)