I’m sure you are surprised by the picture I have chosen to start off a blog on life stories, but there is reason for my madness.
I tried to get this new blog 1001 words – Stories of Life off to a running start, but I don’t think many of us seventy-some year olds are ready for that. The idea of writing stories of your life is really the endpoint of this endeavor. I think of myself as a pretty accomplished writer, but even I need some lessons on how to do storytelling properly.
I heard from several of you that you would love to share some life stories, but just don’t know exactly how to do that. With that in mind, I am going to begin this blog in the How-To mode. I have picked up several good sources on how to write life stories and will be sharing those processes with you. During these upcoming “how-to” posts
please ask questions
and offer advice if you have any. I don’t know how long this study mode will go on, but I think we will know the end when we see it. These lessons are not intended to make you a New York Times bestselling author, but instead just a tool to get your stories on-line where others have a chance of reading them.
I’m sure even with these how-to lessons won’t be enough. Each of us will end up developing our own techniques based on our talents and experiences.
Coming Soon – Lessons on how to tell your life stories
Just learning how to write life stories will, for many not be enough to accomplish the task. The second part of the problem is how to get the words on paper. I wish I had an answer for that one, but I really don’t. I realize that some of you are not physically able to type out your stories, and some of you simply don’t know how to type or don’t have the equipment to do that. 🙃
Getting slightly off-topic, I would like to give some advice to young budding authors out there. You might not have the years of experience to talk about, but you have access to that in your communities. One of my all-time favorite books was written by Amy Hill Hearth. She connected with a couple of 100-year-old black women to help them tell their stories. The book is entitled Having Our Say – The Delany sisters’ first hundred years. I have been reading this book on an annual basis for more than a decade now. That’s how much I love it.
Amy collected all the stories and then went into the narrator mode to tell you what she learned. I wish I had come up with the idea of going to a retirement community to collect stories at a much younger and less deaf age. That would have been so satisfying to me, and it would have made me a much better writer in the process.
I am going to actively pursue this goal with anyone who will hear it. I live in a town with a liberal arts college, so there must be hundreds of budding author/narrators for this activity. It’s just a matter of linking them up with the storytellers. That will be a plus/plus for both parties.