Using Your Past to Inspire Your Writing

I’d like to delve into my own past and use items from them to become stories, poems and maybe a memoir. What can I use to jog my memory?

Open up scrapbooks and photo albums. Use these items and photos to recall your past.

Legacy, by Linda Spence, has many questions which will help you recall events.

Besides chronological remembrances, which might get you to think too much like an autobiography rather than a memoir, remember those instances that inspired emotion.

1. When were some times you cried? Experienced loss and death?

2. What were some of the happiest periods of your life? What motivated those feelings?

3. Did you have any “ah-ha” moments of epiphany? How did they change direction in thoughts, words or action?

4. What were some of the most influential people in your life? Don’t talk general terms. Remember the most specific, tiny details you can. Only through the small, specific, sensual particulars can we approach the universal.

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