90-minute Workshop. Session #5 – Saturday, February 18: 3:15 PM – 4:45PM
Five Secrets to Successfully Writing about Things That You Don’t Remember
Is vivid recall absolutely essential to good writing? Many of us start out believing that we must remember accurately and well and then transcribe our memories. This belief stops many of us before we even start; we are appalled at how much we have forgotten and believe these memory gaps doom our writing before we even begin.
This workshop will teach you how to capture the memories you do have while enhancing recollections that are vague or unclear. You will also learn five versatile strategies for writing vividly and evocatively about the parts of your history is it impossible to know for sure. You will leave the workshop with a myriad of strategies for writing about events that happened years ago with fresh immediacy.
Eight-Hour Intensive Workshop: Monday and Tuesday, February 20 and 21, 2 to 6 PM both days
From Memory to Memoir: Crafting Personal Stories that are Vivid, Compelling and True
Many of us hold a deep dream of wanting to write. We want to tell our stories so we can understand ourselves more fully and make sense of our lives. We want to pass family history on to our children and grandchildren. We want our lives—all that we have suffered, celebrated and learned—to provide hope and inspiration for others.
From Memory to Memoir will teach you how to craft your life stories into memoir by giving them shape, texture and beauty. We will examine what transforms a personal story into something that has value and meaning for others, and in the process, we will address the following questions:
- What makes a memoir a memoir?
- What is it about my life experience that makes it worth telling?
- How can I move beyond the “simply personal” into writing that has more universal significance?
- Which stories should I include and which should I leave out?
- How can I write about the past with fresh immediacy?
- What about the voices that tell me I can’t tell these stories because I’d be betraying the people I write about?
This Intensive will combine short teaching segments with creative exercises, guided meditations, and evocative writing prompts. During our rich, varied time together, we will come together as a creative community, learning to transform scraps of memory and story into a rich written legacy.
Laura Davis is the author of seven non-fiction books, including The Courage to Heal, Becoming the Parent You Want to Be, and I Thought We’d Never Speak Again. Laura’s groundbreaking books have sold more than 1.8 million copies around the world. She has also worked as a columnist, talk show host, radio reporter, radio producer, blogger, editor, writing teacher, and speaker. Words have always been at the core of her work.
She says, “Writing has been a companion of mine my whole life. I have used words to understand myself, to express myself, to provoke, to educate, to inspire, to make my mark in the world. Everything I’ve ever done has focused on communication, using words—both spoken and written—to open hearts and minds. For as long as I can remember, I’ve always been an agent of change. Although my pathway keeps changing, words are always at the center.”
Currently, Laura leads weekly writing groups, memoir workshops, and writing retreats in the Santa Cruz, CA area and beyond. She has been mentoring and supporting writers for the past 20 years. It is truly the work of her heart: “I love teaching. I love watching my students find their natural voice and their rhythm. I love it when they find their true stories and discover the courage to put them on the page. I feel like a midwife as my students birth their stories, and I feel honored to witness their bursts of creativity and pure life energy pouring out on the page. Our writing circles are safe places where skills are honed, tears and laughter are welcome, and each writer is seen, heard and deeply known.”
Every week, Laura emails out The Writer’s Journey Roadmap, a free inspirational quote and writing prompt. To subscribe, go to: www.lauradavis.net/prompts. To learn more about her books, classes, retreats and workshops, go to: www.lauradavis.net.
“Laura is a gifted writing teacher. Working with her has changed my relationship to writing, making my words more natural and spontaneous. I have begun to remember events from my past more completely and vividly than before. That has been a great gift for me.” Linda Wright
“When I began working with Laura Davis, I’d carried hundreds of stories around in my head for five-and-a-half decades. Laura helped me breathe life into the words that had waited so long to hear their voices spoken aloud. Her steady guidance and open-hearted engagement with the writer in me was the form of nourishment I needed to begin my long journey as a writer. I am so grateful to Laura for the gift she is.” Paula Mahoney
“Working with Laura Davis, I found the perfect combination of direction, inspiration, permission, and community. With Laura’s guidance, I was able to discover and develop the writer inside of me who had been waiting in darkness my whole life for the support and safety to emerge.” Terresa Lauer