John W. Evans talks about his memoir Young Widower, which was partly borne from two Rumpus essays, and how to make meaning of something—especially grief and loss—if not through narrative....more
Posts Tagged: memoir
Sari Botton and Rebecca Walker talk about the challenges of writing about parents, becoming estranged from them, and then moving together past estrangement, to eventually heal the rift....more
Essayist and writer Geoffrey Wolff talks about the universality of experience, why good memoir draws more attention to the characters around you, and trading writing tips with his brother Tobias....more
Brachah Goykadosh reviews IRIS HAS FREE TIME by Iris Smyles today in The Rumpus Book Reviews....more
At Salon, Dani Shapiro writes an open response to a reader who felt that Shapiro’s memoir Slow Motion wasn’t fully honest because it didn’t include all the details of her life.
In it, she explains what memoir is and isn’t, and what honesty means for the form:
When I write fiction, I make things up.
Rumpus contributor Antonia Crane‘s forthcoming memoir, Spent, is getting some great reviews ahead of its early 2014 release. Check out what the Library Journal has to say:
“VERDICT This is not an antiprostitution diatribe, but is instead one woman’s account of how she gave up drugs and alcohol in favor of another addiction: sex work.
Rumpus contributor Micah Perks has a new eBook out on Shebooks called, Alone In The Woods: Cheryl Strayed, my daughter and me.
Micah Perks’ candid short memoir takes an insightful look at women and the wild, the wildness she experienced as a child on a commune in the Adirondack wilderness, the ways women and wildness are depicted in movies and books like Cheryl Strayed’s bestselling memoir Wild, and the wilderness she discovers inside her own daughter.
In 1994, Mikail Eldin was an arts journalist searching for a story. Five years later, he was a reporter who had survived firefights and brutal torture by Russian troops. He recounts his experiences in his memoir called The Sky Wept Fire. This moving piece featured by Granta is an extract from his memoir....more
The LA Times reported this week that sixteen-year-old Malala Yousafzai’s memoir I Am Malala, has been banned from over 40,000 schools in her native country of Pakistan.
The book (co-written with British journalist Christina Lamb) describes Malala’s transformation into a vocal advocate for girl’s education rights while living under Taliban rule and the attempt by a member of the that organization to assassinate her....more
Melissa Petro, whose Rumpus essay “Not Safe For Work” contributed to getting her fired from a teaching job, writes in this month’s The New Inquiry about what she calls “The Writing Cure”—how writing about traumatic or damning life events offers a cure for often denied or disassociated feelings of victimization and shame....more
Most authors know that revealing intimate autobiographical secrets in our work can have a polarizing effect on our lives – old relationships are transformed or shattered, new ones born through the inevitable connections created.
In OUT, Alysia Abbot describes how publication of her memoir, Fairyland, about being raised by her gay father, opened a Pandora’s box of new information about both her parents....more
National Book Award winner Jesmyn Ward, author of the recent memoir Men We Reaped, speaks candidly about handling grief, exploring place, and “the fragile balance of writing accurately without perpetuating stereotypes and archetypes.”...more
Kyle Boelte reviews Karen Green’s BOUGH DOWN today in The Rumpus Book Review....more
Some years ago I attended a [Margaret Atwood] reading….She introduced the story she read by saying that it was not autobiographical. Then she read her story about a woman who weighed somewhere in the vicinity of 300 pounds. When she was done, and the Q&A started, the first question was: “Miss Atwood, how did you lose all that weight?”
The Los Angeles Review of Books has a fascinating interview with several writers, including our very own David Biespiel, about the wriggly nature of truth in writing of any genre, whether it’s fiction, nonfiction, poetry, memoir—anything....more
Ashley Cardiff, author of the recently-published Night Terrors: Sex, Dating, Puberty and Other Alarming Things, talks to us about the challenges of the sexy memoir, privacy, style, and poses the question of whether or not Axl Rose counts as a recluse....more
When Justin was twenty, his mother was murdered by her fifth husband in their trailer, off the grid from Tombstone, Arizona. He spent the next decade trying not to be defined by his mother’s death, before deciding to face his grief head on for his new memoir, Son of a Gun....more
Leigh Newman’s Still Points North is…a moving, direct, at times sorrowful, at times comic look at her own childhood and coming of age in the aftermath of her own parents divorce....more
Martha Bayne wrote a piece for The Rumpus about her unplanned pregnancy. Next thing she knew, she was being invited onto Fresh Air. That’s when things got sticky…...more
Both Yuknavitch and Scarboro, whose books echo each other in interesting ways, were willing to talk with me about this question of what to do with memoir, and much more....more
Start with a hook.
Vomit splashed on my shoes. Another bullshit night on the suck party circuit. (Too Nick Flynnish?) Or:...more
“The story was there in the music, down to the epilogue.”
Leigh Newman’s memoir, Still Points North: One Alaskan Childhood, One Grown-up World, One Long Journey Home, gets a unique treatment over at Largehearted boy‘s Booknotes, a column where authors are asked to compile a sort of soundtrack to their process....more
An average American newspaper-reader in the first decade of the last century immediately understood, if he read that something was “of the Mary MacLane type,” that this name was shorthand for outsized self-absorption of a specifically feminine nature....more