In my writers’ group, the question was asked: Do you use real experiences from your life in your writing? The memoirists, of course, all put their hands up. But not surprisingly, every writer there did, too, in some way – they wrote in incidents they had lived; they wrote incidents others had told them about; they wrote into their character their own emotions when something similar happened to them; they created characters from people they knew. I finally asked the group: So are we fiction writers using our pasts to create stories, or secret memoirists who turn our lives into fiction?
However you answer that, the fact is, story is the stuff of life and we all draw from our lives to write our stories. So whether you write memoir or fiction, your work will be richer for digging deep into your own life experiences. Welcome to the October Memoir and Back Story Blog Challenge, 2013!
Because creativity can’t be hemmed in, once again I am leaving how you complete this challenge in your own creative hands. The overall theme is Memories. And based on comments at the end of last year’s challenge, doing this every day was a bit much. It was hard to blog and visit each others’ sites every day. So this year, we’ll all blog on odd-numbered days. That gives us the even-numbered days to hop from blog to blog reading each other’s posts. (Or, for those who tried to do more than one blog challenge in October, you have the even-numbered days to do your other thing!)
What kind of posts are acceptable? The sky’s the limit! Write poetry about your past; do a photo collection of old and new or then and now; explore the past through songs or art or cartoon; explore your characters’ fictional pasts.
What are the topics? I’m going to give you some choices here. Some people wanted to carry on reviewing their lives chronologically from where they left off – go for it! Others weren’t able to complete their 25 years last time, and want to work on that – great! For those who want to, though, I’m suggesting this year we have a memory theme each week. And since we’re posting on odd days only, that means three posts on each theme.
Week 1: Childhood. I’m sure we barely scratched the rich creative soil of our youth last year.
Week 2: Relationships. Memories or incidents involving our parents, siblings, friends, romantic interludes, marriages, even our children or grandchildren.
Week 3: Secrets. Dig deep, fellow bloggers, this is powerful stuff!
Week 4: Roots and Wings. Memories of home, leaving or finding it, and of travel or journeys.
Week 5: Gratitude and Regret. The people, experiences, choices you are grateful for or that you regret.
Remember these are options: the over-riding theme is memoir and back story, and we’ll all love seeing just how you choose to explore that! So, how will YOU meet the October Memoir and Back Story Blog Challenge, 2013 ? Get your creative juices flowing - post one is October 1!
Now, all you have to do is register: leave me a message below with your name (real or fictional), your blogsite URL, and your intent to join us. And spread the word - tell everyone you know about it - the more people who join us, the more fun it’ll be!